KDE & me

Well, thanks to some fine tips from the gentoo website, I was able to start the KDE UI without too much trouble. (Thank god for Internet.)

KDE runs fine. KPersonalizer didnt start right off the bat, but I got it starting easily.

I’ve got one issue.

I’m running at 640×480 resolution.





I don’t know what to do… I know gentoo found my video card (can’t remember what it is… I think it’s an nVidia card… yes… I see the “driver” lying around somewhere). I know my monitor can do above 640×480 (I’ve got a monitor that can’t if you can actually believe that…).

KDE does allow me to go to 320×200. Which is amusing, but offers me nothing but amusement value. I mean, come on. 320×200?

I want at least 800×600 out of this. I want 1024×768 from that old setup.

But I don’t know where to go yet…

3 thoughts on “KDE & me

  1. As you might already know, KDE is « just » a window manager above X; you could run Gnome/IceWM/FvWM/XFCE/Enlightenment/… instead of KDE because of this separation.

    So KDE is just a X application with almost no power on your hardware; the trouble with your configuration is probably to be found in a misconfigured X.

    _First_things_first_: nVidia cards are semi-supported on a GNU/Linux system; by that I mean there are 2 possible drivers; 1 is free software and doesn’t do 3D acceleration yet; the other one is proprietary software, does 3D and is shipped by nVidia (ask google for ‘nvidia linux’).

    You probably want the proprietary driver; instructions are provided in the tarball shipped by nVidia.

    Still, the free-software-driver should be able to deliver more than 640×480; I’d take a peek at /etc/X11/xorg.conf (usually it’s there, dunno about Gentoo specifics). Watch closely for monitor timings, they just might be wrong. There is also probably a X configuration tool shipped by Gentoo should you want to pick your monitor off a list instead of transcribing monitor frequencies off a webpage.

    You’ll have to restart X for any change to xorg.conf to take effect; Ctrl-Alt-Backspace (cute isn’t it?) is your key combo to restart X.

    You might also want to take a peek at what hardware is detected by X; usually you’ll find a logfile in /var/log/Xorg.0.log

  2. Oh, and by the way, just to brag about X, you can get any reasonable resolution if you get the timings (monitor and card) right [The list of timings needed for a particular resolution at a particular refresh rate is called a modeline in X’s world]. This means you could get a 1280×800 or 968×684 or whatever resolution. Not useful every day of the week, but for emulating arcade games sometimes it’s better to get a pure 720×400 than to scale.
    You can get one (of the many) modeline generator here: koala.ilog.fr/cgi-bin/nph…

    And if your monitor is too old to grasp the concept of "keeping independant position and size settings for each resolution", `xvidtune` can be used to tweak the videocard directly (in fact, to get more adequate modelines for already existing resolutions).

  3. I eventually figured the xorg.conf thing. It’s not there by default. I had to run “xorgconfig” (or something to that effect) to generate it (or i could’ve just edited the sample config file).

    I didn’t have much time to play with it yesterday and it seems that the config I had it do didn’t detect the mouse… oh well, I’ll get it working on monday 🙂

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