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Behind the schedule since 1989

ASUS X102B and second screen on Debian

I’ve stumbled upon a very capricious piece of hardware lately, which is ASUS X102B. Basic (very basic) video seems to work out of the box, but there are numerous problems here and there. Especially the second screen, which doesn’t seem to work out of the box. If you run xrandr it will only recognize the “default” output and even that would look pretty much broken. First thing to do was:

sudo apt-get install firmware-linux-nonfree

Actually, it’s a go-to solution (as in first thing to try) to many Debian hardware-related problems, as the distro doesn’t include non-free firmware by default. After that it recognizes most outputs the right way, but it may miss the right modes. If so, you could add your mode manually.

First, retrieve the full information about the mode:

cvt 1920 1080

You will get something like that:

# 1920x1080 59.96 Hz (CVT 2.07M9) hsync: 67.16 kHz; pclk: 173.00 MHz
Modeline "1920x1080_60.00"  173.00  1920 2048 2248 2576  1080 1083 1088 1120 -hsync +vsync

Now use the info to add the mode to xrandr and then assign it to the output:

xrandr --newmode "1920x1080" 173.00  1920 2048 2248 2576  1080 1083 1088 1120 -HSync +VSync
xrandr --addmode VGA-0 "1920x1080"

Use the xrandr command to check the list of availible outputs and modes. You probably know that already, but here is how to use xrandr with the newly created mode:

xrandr --output VGA-0 --mode "1920x1080"

Well, as this one issue is officially resolved I’m off to fight the rest of a couple hundred problems, that arise, when trying to use this laptop with Debian. Wish me luck and leave a comment if you had some trouble with the machine (when used with Debian that is) — we could try to work it out together.