Wow, since Wednesday I have a new monitor and I am really happy with that one. It’s a Samsung SyncMaster 204B 20″ and the most important functionality for developers: It has pivot. I have tried pivot at work and have been totally amazed by that. You just see more, it feels much more native. Of course, because the aspect ratio is the same like reading a newspaper.
Hopefully this will not “make your code longer”, as someone critized about this view
But unfortunately there were a lot of issues during the installation process. As some of you know, I only have a TravelMate notebook and got rid of a desktop machine several years ago. Plugging in the monitor was no problem and even the 1600×1200 resolution has been selected automatically. But if I wanted to open the desktop context menu, it took around 3-5 seconds for that. I was totally shocked and so I looked for a solution.
First thing everybody does is looking for new drivers. So, quick look at the ATI page and recognized my Mobility Radeon 9700 is still supported. After downloading the driver I tried to install them but then it fails. The error message was something about that the system is not meant to be compatible with the driver. Hm? After some investigation it came out, that some notebook vendors like Dell, Acer, etc. do not want people to download drivers from the vendors itself. Instead they want you to provide with drivers. Ok, fine with me. Up to the Acer page and downloaded the driver. Unfortunately the version was still the same or even older than the time I bought the notebook.
Luckily I found a page with a very convenient tool. It is called Mobility Modder and is available here. The theory behind is, the notebook vendor contacts ATI to disallow them that the driver installer works on their system. Mobility Modder then does some hex magic and the driver gets installed without any problems. And it works like a charm. So now I am typing this blog entry in a 1200×1600 resolution while the other monitor has all the IM stuff running. Very convenient….
Finally, an unfortunately blurred pic of my desk, now with the new monitor setup: