Dell laptop set native widescreen resolutions such as 1280×800 under Ubuntu Linux

in Categories Howto, Linux desktop, Linux laptop, Tips, Troubleshooting, Ubuntu Linux last updated April 20, 2007

If you want to use the highest possible resolution on new Ubuntu Linux you need to apply a special patch called 915resolution. I’m using Dell Inspiron 6400 laptop with 15.4″ Wide Screen XGA TFT display (1280×800 res.) and my os is Ubuntu Linux 7.04.

Some Intel integrated graphic cards, such as those in most laptops, will require additional work to get them running at their native resolutions such as 1400×1050. These card include the Intel 845G, 855G, and 865G, as well as the 915G, 915GM and 945G.

The problem is that the driver for these cards (“i810”) is designed to query the card for a list of supported resolutions. This list is stored in the video BIOS of the card, and if the vendor was too lazy to include all possible resolutions or if the resolution you want to use is esoteric, then the driver will not be able to use it.

The 915resolution package (resolution modification tool for Intel graphic chipset) gives you the possibility to change the list reported by the card so that the driver will then be able to change the resolution. This is done by replacing a resolution entry in the chip’s list that you don’t want (e.g. 640×480), with the desired resolution.

How do I install 915resolution package under Ubuntu feisty?

You need to add 915resolution package using apt-get or GUI package manager. Make sure you have universe repo enabled. If not click on
System > Administration > Software source > Enable required repo.

Next type the command:
$ sudo apt-get install 915resolution

Next try either rebooting or logging out and logging back in to restart the X server. Now I’ve 1280×800 screen resolution In most cases this should set the resolution. You can also set resolution manually by visiting System > Preferences > Screen Resolution menu.

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Posted by: Vivek Gite

The author is the creator of nixCraft and a seasoned sysadmin and a trainer for the Linux operating system/Unix shell scripting. He has worked with global clients and in various industries, including IT, education, defense and space research, and the nonprofit sector. Follow him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+.

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