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Phantom Monitor

Posted: Tue Aug 04, 2015 9:25 am
by zahnoo
On one of my LunuxMint 17.2 machines, I'm seeing two monitors. The primary is real; the other is not. I've never had a dual monitor system and nothing I do seems to make the ghost monitor go away. I even wiped the drive, used GPartEd to repartition it and reinstalled the OS. Same thing ... two monitors.

Were it just seeing two monitors, I'd ignore it. But on the right side of the screen, where the imaginary monitor is, the mouse pointer will disappear into where the other monitor supposedly resides. This doesn't sound like much, but I keep losing the mouse pointer when it moves into other monitor. Makes using the scroll bar a bit of a hassle not to mention losing the mouse pointer.

Anyway, If you have a suggestion, I'd appreciate you responding.

Please understand, I am a complete noob at troubleshooting. I've been dabbling on and off with Linux for years; only just recently got serious about it.

Re: Phantom Monitor

Posted: Tue Aug 04, 2015 10:05 am
by ralplpcr
While this is just a guess, are you by chance running a laptop that has an external VGA port? Some laptops have a setting in their BIOS that will set the system to either "extend" or "duplicate" your desktop. This is frequently tied to a keyboard command in Windows, but sometimes can be hard-wired into the BIOS. It sounds like Mint may be picking up on this setting, and is expecting you to have a monitor plugged in on this port.

In the Display setting, you *should* be able to click the "ghost" monitor, and turn it OFF. Have you tried this yet?
Screenshot from 2015-08-04 10_07_06.png
It'd definitely help if you could provide a little more info, such as the video drivers you're using, your general hardware, etc....

Re: Phantom Monitor

Posted: Tue Aug 04, 2015 3:56 pm
by zahnoo
Thanks for the quick response. The computer is a desktop and the Video card is an nVidia GeForce N6200. It is admittedly an old machine but runs really well. Currently I've not changed to the nVidia driver but it apparently doesn't matter. With the previous install, I was using the nVidia drivers but that made no difference.

I read several places I could just click the unwanted monitor and turn it off. That has yet to work. I also unplugged the monitor and powered completely down, changed cables and swapped from digital to analog and back. When I hook the monitor up to a different computer I see only it ... no phantoms. I checked CMOS Setup too to no avail.

Like I said, this is mostly just an annoyance and I can definitely run with it as is.

EDIT: I just did as you said and now I have what I can live with. I was expecting the "ghost" monitor to go away; all that happened is it's now turned off. My mouse pointer no longer disappears off the screen. Typical noob situation and not really understanding what I'm seeing. If I could figure out how to get a screen shot I'd post it, but this fix is good enough for me. I guess what threw me was what now works shows both monitors and both appear to be "off"; everything is grayed-out. But no matter, it works... thanks again for the pointer.

Re: Phantom Monitor

Posted: Tue Aug 04, 2015 6:59 pm
by ninomrki
Or you could check the "mirror displays" box and then "both" monitors will show the same display