Author Topic: Two monitors setup.  (Read 1431 times)

Offline Traveller

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Two monitors setup.
« on: Sep 01, 2009, 09:39 PM »
Hi All.

I would like to connect two monitors to my pc. The monitors will both be widescreen, but I would like to view applications/images in portrait as well as landscape type views. The monitors can be rotated but they don't have any feature that let's the picture rotate. For this, I've been told that there's something called 'pivot software' which can be used to rotate the display. My first question is, is that a simple, straightforward task?

A spreadsheet may have many columns, which I would want to work with on the horizontal monitor.
A document may be a few pages long, which I would want to work with on the vertical monitor.

Is it possible to view the spreadsheet on one monitor and the document on the other? If yes, then can it be done at the same time?

Another example is when you're viewing images that are a mix of long and wide ones, for example, your 'Holidays' folder may contain panoramic pictures of beaches, etc, but also have pictures of tall buildings and towers in the same album.

Is it possible to view the wide images on one monitor and the long images on the other?

If none of the above are possible, is there any other way that I can come close to what I am trying to achieve? The problem is that most large screens are widescreen nowadays, which leaves you wondering how it would be possible to view long images at their original, large size without scrolling!!

Lastly, as if the above scenario wasn't bad enough, is any of it possible with Linux??

Thanks for any advice.
« Last Edit: Sep 01, 2009, 09:52 PM by Traveller »

Offline Buffalo2102

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Re: Two monitors setup.
« Reply #1 on: Sep 02, 2009, 12:41 AM »
All of what you want to do should be very possible although I'm not too sure about the Linux support.

Some monitors come with software that will change the display automatically if you turn the monitor into portrait mode.  In combination with your graphics cards drivers (where you can extend your conventional desktop onto a second monitor), you should be able to have (for example) your primary display in landscape mode and a secondary portrait display that you can just drag portrait documents, photos etc. onto using the mouse.

Unfortunately, I have never done this myself so can't say that it is definitely possible but it should be.  Your best bet may be to shop around for a second monitor that does what you want (e.g. http://www.amazon.com/review/R3TXBREORU44HQ) and then check for linux support.  Then look for someone who has experience with the monitor on forums etc. who can answer your questions definitely.

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Offline Bill

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Re: Two monitors setup.
« Reply #2 on: Sep 02, 2009, 04:52 AM »
I use 2 monitors regularly, and frequently have 2 documents open so I can cut and paste between them.  I do that by starting a second instance of Word.  After opening the second, I simply drag it to the second monitor.  You can do the same with Word and Excel, simply open the program and drag it to the monitor of your choice.  I have no experience with using portrait and landscape, or linux.

edit: The other possibility is that some imaging programs like Irfan (free) allow you to rotate images once you have opened the file.

Bill
« Last Edit: Sep 02, 2009, 04:59 AM by Bill »
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Offline Traveller

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Re: Two monitors setup.
« Reply #3 on: Sep 02, 2009, 09:04 AM »
Hi Buff. Thanks for the advice. The monitors are not those that are designed to turn, so they definitely won't have any software to go with them for this purpose. The monitor will be taken off it's stand and mounted vertically. You state that graphics card drivers allow a second monitor to be used. If I am to purchase a new graphics card for this purpose, what is it that I need to ensure that the card/drivers have? The monitors that I want are not pivotable on their stand.

Hi Bill. Thanks for the info. So will I just need an adapter that splits the cable going from the computer to the monitors in two and the drivers that comes with the graphics card? Is that all??

Thanks for the helpful advice again!

Offline Bill

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Re: Two monitors setup.
« Reply #4 on: Sep 02, 2009, 12:04 PM »
No, actually the cable is not split.  The Graphics card will have 2 or more connections, dvi or sub-D, 2 of each or one of one type and one of the other,  My present card has 2 DVI connections which allows both monitors to operate in digital mode, a better arrangement than sub-D which is analog.   As far as I know, if the card has 2 connectors there is nothing further you have to do with the card.  

Windows allows you to specify, in the the Control Panel, how you want to use the monitors.  You choose between extending your desk top across both monitors or run them individually, allowing separate wallpapers and images on each.  It also allows you to decide which monitor will be the primary one where Windows will display the desk top icons and the task bar.

It took me a while to tweak the settings before I finally got things where I wanted them, but not really hard.

Windows, in some circumstances. treats the 2 monitors with an extended desk top as one.  For instance if you like taking screen shots, they will contain both monitors, even if the second one is turned off.
If you or someone else knows how to take a screen shot of just one, without disconnecting the video cable, that would be useful to know.

If your present graphics card has just one video connector, you have two options.  Buy a new card that has at least 2, or what I did initially, use an old PCI card and run 2 independent video cards. The PCI card's performance, in my case, was not as good as the other one but I only used it for email and Word so it really didn't matter.

Bill
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Offline scuzzy

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Re: Two monitors setup.
« Reply #5 on: Sep 02, 2009, 12:54 PM »
Be VERY careful with the viewing angles, especially if the monitor is not designed to swivel. Once turned vertical, the viewing angle on some LCD panels can be absolutely horrible.
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Offline Traveller

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Re: Two monitors setup.
« Reply #6 on: Sep 02, 2009, 07:00 PM »
Thanks for the graphics card advice, Bill. I've always thought it used to work with an adapter! Haha. I tried a search for your screenshots issue, but came up with nothing. There was one site where someone mentioned 'disable' the monitor and then 're-activate' it. This doesn't sound like disconnecting the cables, so maybe there are some settings somewhere to disable and re-activate??

Thanks for the advice Scuzzy. I plan on sitting directly in front of my screens and there will only be me, so I am hoping that viewing angles won't be too much of a problem, however, because the monitor isn't designed to swivel, I think it will definitely require the pivot software (or whatever) because if the monitor is turned, it's display will remain sideways!

As mentioned, it is to be used with Linux. I think the only way to find out is to buy all the gear and try it! Haha.

Thanks.
« Last Edit: Sep 02, 2009, 07:54 PM by Traveller »

Offline Traveller

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Re: Two monitors setup.
« Reply #7 on: Sep 03, 2009, 11:17 AM »
Just remembered something else which I should have asked before. I have not yet purchased the monitors or the graphics card. I won't be buying the graphics card for a few weeks yet, but wish to buy the monitors right away. Would I be able to check that the monitors are working ok? My current graphics card does not cover the native resolution of the monitors, but will I be able to check that they are working at a lower resolution?

Thanks.

Offline Bill

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Re: Two monitors setup.
« Reply #8 on: Sep 03, 2009, 11:22 AM »
Should be OK as long as your present card has a compatible connector or the monitors come with both kinds if cables.

Bill
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Offline Traveller

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Re: Two monitors setup.
« Reply #9 on: Sep 03, 2009, 05:50 PM »
Thanks Bill. The monitor has a 15 pin D-Sub connection, which I'm assuming is the normal old type which I've been using for the past five years.

Offline Traveller

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Re: Two monitors setup.
« Reply #10 on: Sep 04, 2009, 05:47 PM »
Hi Bill.

Came across this, but don't have a clue if it does what you want regarding printscreen.

Maybe it could if you just use your mouse to select the full area on the second monitor manually.

http://www.infonautics.ch/screencaptureprint/


Offline Bill

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Re: Two monitors setup.
« Reply #11 on: Sep 05, 2009, 05:07 AM »
Thanks, I will give it a try.


Bill
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