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Last night in a computer store with the midnight sale of Windows 7, I see many netbooks, all are 1024 x 600 resolution.

Then when the CPU meter and the Clock gadget were added, the CPU meter looked spherical, but the clock (the second clock -- the silver one) looked somewhat oval.

Later on I went to all the desktops and both the CPU meter and the clock were spherical.

So do the netbook have this "aspect ratio" problem? It is not a big deal but it'd be nice to know if I get a netbook and know that it is common on the netbook. (and aware that the picture and photos will be slightly distorted).


All the netbooks were at 1024 x 600, which was their "native" resolution. Every single one of the netbooks showed an oval shaped clock. None of the desktop had that issue.

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

A lot of netbooks use the Intel integrated graphics chip, which can be a real pain to setup properly. It uses a special management software to "improve" the experience. In reality, it often causes a lot of headache because it adds "functionality" that causes unexpected results. Usually, when stretching happens, someone has set the computer to 800x600 with the "fill screen" option selected. If you set the monitor settings to "Maintain aspect ratio" it should display it without distortion.

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If I was you, I would double check that the resolution is set correctly as I have used many netbooks and not witnessed this other than if it has been manually set incorrectly.

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You should be able to set Windows' screen resolution to match the physical screen resolution. (If you can't, then get an updated display driver.) Then the aspect ratio would be correct and circles will be circles. That applies to any computer, not just netbooks.

That should work with all OS'es except possibly those that provide a limited but instant-on session (such as Splashtop on Asus Eee). Those may have very limited configuration options.

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