Mirroring the display on an iMac running windows
September 9, 2008 3:52 PM   Subscribe

For a new iMac running Windows XP, I need to mirror/clone the display so it shows the same on the monitor and a projector. The graphics driver (for an ATI Mobiity Radeon HD 2600XT) doesn't support mirroring, but the iMac does it automatically. But the monitor and the projector have very different aspect ratios, and the same screen size gets applied to both. Is there a way to set two different screen sizes? There's nothing under the display preferences. Any third party software that would work?
posted by hydrophonic to Computers & Internet (6 answers total)
Mirroring means you have the exact same thing on both screens. So, no, you cannot have two different sizes, because if you did, you could not have the exact same thing on both screens. You can of course have different things on both screens, but that is not mirroring.
posted by kindall at 3:59 PM on September 9, 2008

Doesn't mirroring necessitate forcing both displays to the same size?
posted by mr_roboto at 4:00 PM on September 9, 2008

Response by poster: Before we got the iMac, we used a Dell Precision 380 with an NVidia graphics card. In the display properties there was option of mirroring the display and applying different screen sizes. Only NVidia called it "cloning.

I've heard tell that while mirroring in OS X you have the options of compressing the wider screen, adding black bars to the sides of the display. I haven't tried that yet, but still I need an option while running Windows.
posted by hydrophonic at 4:14 PM on September 9, 2008

The best you could get away with is extended desktop, re kindall as to why you cannot clone AND have differing resolutions.

UltraMon is a pretty good windows tool for managing such things as desktop extension.
posted by judge.mentok.the.mindtaker at 5:15 PM on September 9, 2008

Response by poster: Thinking about it, I guess when we had the Dell PC the monitor had about the same aspect ratio as the projector screen. Did I just now invent the idea of cloning with different screen sizes?

So what I could really use is a way to stop the monitor from stretching the display image when the setting doesn't match its aspect ratio. (OS X doesn't stretch; I just tried it.) That way I could set the display for 1280 x 1024, which works great for the projector, and the image wouldn't be distorted on the monitor.

This is for a design classes, so having undistorted displays is important. The school probably won't pony up for a new projector or larger screen.
posted by hydrophonic at 7:38 PM on September 9, 2008

Standalone LCD panels (and PC laptops) often have an option in the BIOS that specifies whether to stretch non-native screen resolutions to fill the screen. That's what you want. Unfortunately your iMac doesn't give you that option.
posted by kindall at 9:13 AM on September 10, 2008

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