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I'm looking for a setup that can do both (not even sure if its possible):

  1. Display different data on each screen (6 screens)
  2. Display 1 large image split across all 6 screens (2x3)

Obviously I would only be in one of the modes at a time, but I would like to be able to programmatically switch between the two modes.

I'm pretty sure I can do #1 by using 2 of these: http://www.matrox.com/graphics/en/products/graphics_cards/m_series/m9120pluslpx16/

And I could do #2 by using 1 of these: http://www.amd.com/us/products/desktop/graphics/ati-radeon-hd-5000/hd-5870-eyefinity-6-edition/Pages/overview.aspx

But I'm not sure how I could accomplish both modes with 1 setup. Also, its worth mentioning that this isn't intended as a gaming setup.

Any ideas?

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I'm pretty sure the 6 edition lets you do #1 also. –  Sirex Jan 27 '11 at 9:41
    
I've successfully run a 4-monitor setup under Windows 7 that works as an extended desktop, so you can run different windows on separate screens, or even stretch one out so that it covers all four (usually requires sizing it manually). Am about to attempt a 6-monitor setup using the same technique. Trying to work out whether to use 3 x 2-port cards, 2 x 3-port cards, or 1 x 6-port card. –  Simon Apr 11 '11 at 0:15

1 Answer 1

up vote 0 down vote accepted

Either setup should fulfill both those needs. It's not so much a matter of changing something programmatic as it is simply snapping a window to the edge of each screen... Assuming a Linux setup, you can usually restrict yourself by setting up multiple monitors as separate X screens, thus disallowing an application on one screen from interfering with applications on other screens, while allowing you to use the same mouse for both. That is not, however, the usual setup, and it's usually much simpler just to use all the monitors as one hybrid display system (Your "mode #2") and as needed simply resize windows to fit each monitor, or in the case of some window managers, maximizing a window will in fact, snap it to a single monitor. (Your "mode #1")

In Windows, well, there's no other way to do it ;)

Hope that clears things up.

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Thanks for the response. I'm still a bit confused...If I setup the 6 screens to be different, wouldn't the display controller restrict 1 screen from showing up on all 6 displayed when maximized? –  gmoniey Jan 27 '11 at 20:07
    
The display controller shouldn't have any such innate restriction. On both Windows and Linux, the OS (Well, Xinerama on Linux) handles allowing one window to be spread across multiple displays, even multiple graphics cards. –  Jeremy Sturdivant Jan 27 '11 at 22:40
    
Looks interesting...I'll play around with Xinerama –  gmoniey Jan 27 '11 at 23:58

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