[UFO Chicago] Brian's Conversion from FreeBSD to Debian and Questions on X

Neil R. Ormos ormos at ripco.com
Mon May 8 17:30:01 PDT 2006

Brian Sobolak wrote:

> I finally swtiched from FreeBSD to Linux
> full-time after five years.

What prompted this conversion?

> [ . . . ] (Especially X, as it defaulted at
> 800x600, and Xorg -configure core dumps when I
> try to run it.)

I think you might want

  dpkg-reconfigure xserver-xfree86


  dpkg-reconfigure xserver-xorg

depending on which X server you're running. If
you're running Sarge, it's probably xfree86.  If
you're running something later, it might be

If you don't have any luck reconfiguring the
xserver using Debian's reconfigurator tool, check
your /etc/X11/XF86Config-4 file.  Before modifying
it, make a backup of your working config file so
you can recover if you mess it up.


  Section "Screen",

there should be a bunch of

  SubSection "Display"

groups.  Each group should have a


line and a Modes line. Make sure your Modes lines
include the modes that you want to use.  These
modes need to be ones supported by your monitor.
As an example:

   Modes	"1280x1024" "1024x768" "800x600" "640x480"

Also, check

   Section "Monitor"

There should be lines like

	HorizSync	hh-hh
	VertRefresh	vv-vv

where hh-hh is the range of horizontal sync
frequencies in KHz, and vv-vv is the range of
vertical sync frequencies in Hz for your
particular monitor.  If you selected a generic
monitor in the Debian configuration program, it
probably installed a maximum HorizSync value that
is too low to support the higher resolutions you
want to use.  Even if you declare higher
resolution (or higher vertical refresh rate)
modes, X won't use them unless they are within the
frequencies the "Monitor" Section says the monitor
will support.  If you don't know the monitor specs
and the monitor is not known to the Debian
configurator tool, you might try searching on
Google for the monitor model and the term "hsync",

Good luck.


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