[developers] Weird GUI behavior on new ubuntu machine

Emily M. Bender ebender at u.washington.edu
Wed Feb 25 22:13:18 CET 2009

We have a partial fix and some more information:

Regarding the ridiculously large font sizes, David Brodbeck (our sysadmin)
figured out the following:

The font size problem was due to X getting a really strange idea about
the monitor size, probably because it's being run in a VM.   "xdpyinfo
| grep resolution" was reporting 153x164 dpi.  It was scaling all the
fonts up to compensate for what it thought was a very high resolution

The fix is to give X a more reasonable idea of the screen size.  This
can be done by adding a line like the following to the "Monitor"
section of /etc/X11/xorg.conf:
       DisplaySize     338         270
The numbers are the horizontal and vertical viewable area in
millimeters, and the ones shown here give 96x96 dpi for a 1280x1024
display.  Here's a list of reasonable settings for various
resolutions, grabbed from

#       DisplaySize     270     203     # 1024x768 96dpi
#       DisplaySize     338     254     # 1280x960 96dpi
#       DisplaySize     338     270     # 1280x1024 96dpi
#       DisplaySize     370     277     # 1400x1050 96dpi
#       DisplaySize     423     370     # 1600x1400 96dpi

You could cut-and-paste this into xorg.conf and just uncomment the one
corresponding to your display size.

On the other two problems:

1.  The font error remains, even after removing the font per Erik's message.
2. (Most troubling) the keyboard focus problem remains.

I tried running the delph-in distribution (following the instructions
on LkbInstallation)
and found that the font error goes away, but the keyboard focus problem doesn't.

As noted before, when I x-forward from this machine to another, I don't
see these problems.


More information about the developers mailing list