Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Temporarily fixing resolution problems in Zorin OS

What is one day - just after playing a game - you have the unpleasant surprise to see the screen resolution changed, showing big ugly icons and distorted wallpaper? And what if, no matter how hard you try, you can't find the cause, and, most important, the solution for this?

Well, this has happened to me. But, luckily after long searches, I got an idea about the possible cause for this problem and I have also found a way to fix it. Well, at least. temporarily. I couldn't find yet a definitive answer, but I'm still working on it. But first, let's see...

...the problem


In very few words, the problem is caused by a misfortune cocktail of games, drivers and a bug present in Wine / PlayOnLinux app. Its manifests randomly and, from what I've observed on forums, it doesn't seem to matter what game you play, whether it is the last version of a complicated RPG, or just a humble kids arcade.

As I've said, the image on the screen remains distorted after playing (or trying to play) the game. No matter what you do, how many times you try to change the settings, using the "normal" ways, it simply doesn't seem to work. Well, I've been going though this frustrating situation, but, luckily, I've found...


...the solution


Note: this is a way to recover the screen resolution in Zorin OS 6 LTS, but it is a temporarily fix! You'll have to run this command every day when you start your PC. If you shut down, restart, or flip your laptop and let it into stand by state, then you'll have to run this command again.

Or, at least this is what happens in my case. Who knows, maybe you'll be luckier than me and it will work better in your case. Anyway, writing commands several times a day, is not exactly ideal, and it can drive people away from Linux, which is ot what I want, so I'll look deeper to find a better solution. Till then, this are the solutions I've found and the ways they work on my Zorin OS 6 distro.


Solution no. 1


This is my favorite because is the simplest and I find it handy.

First, open the Terminal. In order to do that, go to :

Start - All Applications - Accessories - Terminal

or press Ctrl + Alt + T

and write this command:

xrandr -s 0

and then press "Enter". Here is how it should look in the Terminal:

resolution fix
Short command line to fix resolution in Zorin OS



After running this  command the screen will turn black for several seconds, maybe it will show some sports of colours, then, the resolution will get back to normal.


Solution no. 2



Actually, is the first I've discovered, but I've abandoned it because the other one is shorter and both of them have - in my case - the same effects. But I write it here, just in case.

In Terminal, write this command line:

xrandr -s 0 && xrandr -s 0

Press "Enter".


Zorin OS command




And now the long version of the story. One day, recently, I had the bad inspiration to try to install a little game from MyPlayCity.com. It's about a game called 4 Elements. Just a silly game with faeries, water, fire and stones. The game wasn't something new for me. Actually, the strange thing is that I used to play this game a lot three years ago, on a Windows XP system and I had no problems. I keep an older version of the game (dating from 2012) saved somewhere on a device and, last year, I have installed that version on another XP system. Again, no problems with that game. Until now.

Most newbies will tend to believe that there is a problem with Linux, but I incline to believe that is the game to be blamed. Because, in the exact same day when I have installed 4 Elements, my mother installed Farm Frenzy 2 on her Windows XP computer, and she had the same resolution problems like me.

In her case, the problems were fixed easier, and the game, was, of course, uninstalled and banned for good, but in my case, things got a little complicated, as you can see.

I've forgot to mention that I've installed the game using Wine app, because it is an .exe, so it was made to be played on Windows.

In fact, no matter the title, all the games mentioned on forums, blogs or groups, related to this bug, share the same thing: they are Windows-oriented and they are played trough Wine / PlayOnLinux app. Besides of that, I can't understand why all these problems don't manifest when installing the old versions? Are the newest versions full of errors and that makes them causing these unpleasant surprises?

And, most of all, how can this be fixed for good without getting too geeky every time the PC is turned on? These are questions and challenges to solve...

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