VMware Workstation 5.5

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Using Full Screen Mode on a Linux Host

When you switch to full screen mode, VMware Workstation changes the full screen display resolution to better match the resolution set in the guest operating system. On a Linux host, VMware Workstation uses the VidMode or DGA2 extension from the XFree86 Project or XiG's Xfs to match the host resolution to the one requested by the guest running in the virtual machine.

In a few cases, VMware Workstation may not find the best resolution.

When VMware Workstation switches to full screen mode, it can choose only those resolutions that are already configured for the host's X server. If a virtual machine runs at a resolution that does not match a mode listed in host's X server configuration, then VMware Workstation chooses the closest larger mode (and uses black borders) for full screen mode or else simply does not offer full screen mode at all.

It is possible to have bad modes configured for the X server on your host. If your host's X configuration was automatically generated, or if you never tested all modes with your current monitor and video card, it is possible that some enabled modes do not work with your monitor. However, the mode-switching code in VMware Workstation has no way of knowing this and a virtual machine that tries to use a resolution with a bad mode line can cause your display to fail to display correctly.

If this happens, immediately leave full screen mode by pressing Ctrl-Alt, then fix your X server configuration and restart X. However, if the only problem is that the image is off center or is not quite the right size on the monitor, you can usually correct it using the controls on your monitor. Note that most modern monitors are capable of storing separate settings for each resolution, so changing the settings for a new mode should not impair the settings for the host resolution.

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