28 May 2005

Tip for folk that would like X to show fonts (i.e. the GDM log in screen) in the correct size: Teach X about the dpi setting!

Step 1: run xdpyinfo and look for the dimensions: line. There will be something like this:

dimensions: 1280×768 pixels (266×161 millimeters)

resolution: 122×121 dots per inch

Grab a ruler and measure the screen you have. If it matches the millimeters reported by X, then skip step 2.

Step 2: edit /etc/X11/xorg.conf, and locate your Monitor section:

Section “Monitor”

Identifier “Generic Monitor”

Option “DPMS”

DisplaySize 265 160


Add in a DisplaySize like I have there. Now logout of your GUI and restart X – you can run /etc/init.d/{g,k}dm restart from the console, or do what I do – just hit ctrl-alt-bkspace so it restarts. Your login screen should change appearance slightly – either the fonts and regions will get bigger if your dpi was set too low, or vice verca.

Step 3: (For KDE users, someone please tell me what it should be, for GNOME read on)…

Run xdpyinfo again and find the Resolution: line. Ignore the fact that it may not be square, grab one of the two numbers ( I suggest the higher)..

Go to System, Preferences, Font, and select ‘Details’. There is a Resolution field there. Put in the single number you chose. Changes should take effect immediately.

Applications that setting this right in that I know improve:

xpdf, gnome-* (panels are readable etc etc).

14 May 2005

I spent an hour down at Dick Smith browsing laptops (the hoverbook screen is just about to break at the hinge.).

We also needed a new house phone – the old ones aerial is falling off (it is 6 years old :)). So Lynne pops up there after doing some browsing elsewhere and we find a neat digital phone with 200 hours standby. (Wow!). Buy that, leave, and get accosted at the exit by a staff member asking if ‘may I inspect your bag’.

To which I give the simple answer – no.

Why the blog ? Well, theres no way I’m buying a multi-thousand dollar laptop from a store that doesn’t trust me – and pays someone to stand outside the store and check everyone whos wearing a backpack. (Mine had my old laptop in it). If she had insisted (rather than asking) – I probably would have allowed her to check, as well as returned the new phone I had just purchased.

What is Australian culture coming to that this is considered ‘normal’ ? I don’t recall seeing that at any store I’ve been to from the various Ubuntu conferences.

Shame Australia. shame.