SUMMARY: Setting the display mode on a SS4

From: Chin Fang (fangchin@jessica.Stanford.EDU)
Date: Tue Apr 30 1996 - 13:15:15 CDT

Dear fellow Sun Managers,

First of all, I would like to thank the following Sun managers for
sharing their experience, interest, and hints to my quest for a higher
resolution on an Entry Level Color Monitor for a SS4 110 Mhz.

Deryck F Brown <> (Kevin Sheehan {Consulting Poster Child})
Brad Young <>
Todd Pfaff <>
"Richard C. Gaine III" <>
Dave Mitchell <>
Steve Mowbray <>
Henry Katz <>

The key answers are from two sources: both UK Sun managers Deryck and Dave
nailed the key value for setenv output-device screen:r1152x900x94

The 94 is a key value, without it, nothing works. I spent quite a lot
time trying to figure out what it is meant for, but so far no answers. It
obvously is not the refresh rate, as with the horizontal scanning frequency
range that the entry level color monitor is capable of, it's IMPOSSIBLE to
have a refresh rate this high (65 ~ 66 would be reasonable).

The Sun's web page and docs are not helpful in this regard. Sun's web page
only mention that the entry level color monitor is capable of doing
1152x900 @ 66 Hz. However, if one puts in 66 in the screen:r1152x900x...
it won't work :(

I wish Sun documents more about this in the OpenBoot Command Reference
Manual or somewhere. I have searched up and down many times in the Answerbook
without any success.

In short, the steps to take:

(1) halt your machine (SS4 with entry leval color monitor and only this
    monitor) using shutdown to get the prom ok prompt. Then type the following
    at the prompt as shown!!!!
(2) setenv output-device screen:1152x900x94
(3) setenv fcode-debug? true
(4) reset

Don't use boot at step (4), use reset.

After the machine comes back on line, you will immediately notice smaller
fonts and once you are in X, the resolution is 1152x900.

However, staying in front of the entry level monitor with this
resolution (or any resolution for that matter) is strongly
discouraged. The .28mm dot-pitch really hurts the display quality.
The .25 mm dot-pitch of these Sony OEMed Trintron Sun monitors are much
nicer to your eyes. However, if budget constrains force you to live with
the entry level, at least you can now have more screen real estate to play

Thanks again to the seven Sun managers listed above. I hope this
summary useful to some people.


Chin Fang

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