Setting resolution and enabling GPU with VNC

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guardian452
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Setting resolution and enabling GPU with VNC

Unread postby guardian452 » Wed Jul 22, 2015 12:03 pm

Is there a way to set a resolution for VNC users in OSX? Without a monitor plugged into the server (mac pro), it defaults to just 1280x1024. Also, is there a way to enable GPU acceleration even without a monitor connected? I thought the performance of the vnc viewer I downloaded was bad, but realized that even with the screen sharing built into osx it is simply not using an accelerated desktop unless an actual monitor is plugged in. Performance seems much better with a monitor plugged into the server, even tho in "about this mac" it still shows the graphic card present (FWIW a radeon 5770)

A program like switchresx kinda takes care of the first part, just trying it out now ;) tho it seems ridiculous to have to pay for such basic functionality that should be part of the system... and it doesn't enable the GPU. (tho, if the power savings are significant, maybe I am better off with the GPU disabled as that sucker puts out a lot of heat!)

I have seen the dummy display dongles... no thanks, lol.

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Re: Setting resolution and enabling GPU with VNC

Unread postby hamei » Wed Jul 22, 2015 6:22 pm

Doesn't Mackletosh have X ? I thought it was yeeewnix !! ?
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Re: Setting resolution and enabling GPU with VNC

Unread postby guardian452 » Wed Jul 22, 2015 7:43 pm

As an optional download. I fire up X once every few weeks... in a window... only when I *really* have to.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Display_PostScript wrote:Apple's Mac OS X operating system uses a central window server (created entirely by Apple) that caches window graphics as PDF, instead of storing and executing PostScript code. A graphics library called Quartz 2D provides PostScript-style imaging using the PDF rendering model (a subset, plus tweaks, of the PostScript model), but this is used by application frameworks—there is no PostScript present in the Mac OS X window server. Apple chose to use this model for a variety of reasons, including the avoidance of high Adobe-imposed licensing fees for DPS, and more efficient support of legacy Carbon and Classic code; QuickDraw-based applications use bitmapped drawing exclusively


Want to find a convenient place where I can squirrel this box away but still login. As much as I dislike Apple, I dislike the alternatives even more. Still a good handy box to keep around, it just keeps ticking and does several useful things very well.

Hell, maybe just get a mini-DP-to-hdmi cord and hook it up to the teevee.

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Re: Setting resolution and enabling GPU with VNC

Unread postby hamei » Thu Jul 23, 2015 1:45 am

guardian452 wrote:As an optional download. I fire up X once every few weeks... in a window... only when I *really* have to.

Okay le, sorry for the misdirection. It appears from the poorly-written crap at Wikipedia that Apple does not use X at all. All their blather about pdf rather than postscript is just misdirection. Display Postscript is not a windowing system. X is. NextStep apparently wrote wrappers and extensions for display postscript to use it as a windowing system as well as a display driver. SGI did not. I could not see how you could use PDF as a windowing system.

And apparently they don't. At least as far as I can tell from the crappy writeup, quartz is much more than display pdf. It is also the windowing system. The display pdf thingy is a distraction.

So no X :( I didn't see anything similar to rdp, either.

That's what I get for following the 'OS X is Unix !' breadcrumb trail to the old witch'es house in the forest :P
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Re: Setting resolution and enabling GPU with VNC

Unread postby guardian452 » Sat Jul 25, 2015 9:49 am

hamei wrote:
guardian452 wrote:As an optional download. I fire up X once every few weeks... in a window... only when I *really* have to.

Okay le, sorry for the misdirection. It appears from the poorly-written crap at Wikipedia that Apple does not use X at all.

You say that like it is a bad thing?? X is universally hated, why would I want to use it? VNC is lightweight and simple. It's little more than just a video stream. My issue is with getting the graphics card to work without a monitor plugged in. Without it, even just scrolling through a web page is a little choppy. I figured there would be a magical hidden switch that reveals itself when the option key was held down. Apple is fond of hiding features like that. Even more so than configuration files. :twisted:

RDP or something like it would be nice, but I don't think it exists on mac, either.

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Re: Setting resolution and enabling GPU with VNC

Unread postby hamei » Sat Jul 25, 2015 6:14 pm

guardian452 wrote:You say that like it is a bad thing?? X is universally hated, why would I want to use it?

Because it works ?
VNC is lightweight and simple.

But doesn't work :)
It's little more than just a video stream. My issue is with getting the graphics card to work without a monitor plugged in. Without it, even just scrolling through a web page is a little choppy.

With X, this is not a problem. I used to do it all the time. The O300 didn't even have graphics but no such hassles ...

Yeah, everybody may hate X but ... well ... it works. That's worth something.
RDP or something like it would be nice, but I don't think it exists on mac, either.

Yeah, I couldn't find anything like that either. Classy should have a better idear ?

I see you've taken up sailing ? If you can, grab something little like a Mirror dinghy. More fun than a barrel of monkeys :-)
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Re: Setting resolution and enabling GPU with VNC

Unread postby guardian452 » Sat Jul 25, 2015 8:06 pm

Vnc works great. I just have to have a monitor plugged into the computer when it boots up, or otherwise the desktop is not accelerated. This also means the beefy radeon in the mac can do the heavy lifting, instead of whatever crappy graphics are in my laptop, which is kind of the opposite of how X works.

Seems the easiest thing is to plug in a monitor, which is why products like this exist. It just feels like there should be an easier way, but at that point I may as well plug in a monitor. The monitor doesn't even have to be connected to power, so long as the edid is there.

The picture is a few years old. That is my grandparent's boat, although I used to spend a lot of time in lasers when I was a kid. :) Grandpa actually had a mirror hanging in the garage for a long time. At some point I asked them about it, but they had given it away by then :(
Last edited by guardian452 on Sat Jul 25, 2015 9:32 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: Setting resolution and enabling GPU with VNC

Unread postby ClassicHasClass » Sat Jul 25, 2015 8:20 pm

No idea, actually. All of my VNCable systems (two Power Macs, one Intel) are hooked up to KVMs anyway, and none of them are later than 10.6.
smit happens.

:Fuel: bigred, 900MHz R16K, 4GB RAM, V12 DCD, 6.5.30
:Indy: indy, 150MHz R4400SC, 256MB RAM, XL24, 6.5.10
:Indigo2IMP: purplehaze, 175MHz R10000, Solid IMPACT
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Re: Setting resolution and enabling GPU with VNC

Unread postby hamei » Sun Jul 26, 2015 12:42 am

guardian452 wrote: That is my grandparent's boat, although I used to spend a lot of time in lasers when I was a kid. :) Grandpa actually had a mirror hanging in the garage for a long time. At some point I asked them about it, but they had given it away by then :(

Oh :( I've had a 5 meter, a Dragon and a Lester Stone yawl, but the Mirror was the funnest of all. Had a blonde bimbo gold-digger (boy did she screw up her research) girlfriend who tried to kill me with a Laser ... you can't take two people and a snack on a Laser very well. And you can't relax at all. The Mirror ... it's just big enough to stick two people in and it has a main, a jib and can have a spinnaker, like a real boat. But it's tiny and cheap and you can flog it to death without any bad result.

A cheap simple dinghy like that is great. Best toy I've had in my whole life, maybe.
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Re: Setting resolution and enabling GPU with VNC

Unread postby guardian452 » Sun Jul 26, 2015 10:02 am

ClassicHasClass wrote:No idea, actually. All of my VNCable systems (two Power Macs, one Intel) are hooked up to KVMs anyway, and none of them are later than 10.6.

I booted into 10.6, it does the same thing. As soon as you plug a monitor in, the desktop becomes accelerated. Don't even have to plug the monitor into power. Don't have to reboot, pass go, or collect $200. Just plug in a monitor.

Anyways it seems the easiest thing is to just leave a monitor plugged in :shock:

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Re: Setting resolution and enabling GPU with VNC

Unread postby hamei » Sun Jul 26, 2015 6:11 pm

guardian452 wrote:Anyways it seems the easiest thing is to just leave a monitor plugged in :shock:

Do you s'pose it's looking for an edid ? I've seen edid-liars, just a cable with a little bit of electronics that lies to the computer about what's connected.
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Re: Setting resolution and enabling GPU with VNC

Unread postby ClassicHasClass » Sun Jul 26, 2015 8:38 pm

I have one of those for another system and it works well, but I thought G wasn't interested in dongles.

("No Dong Missile?" "The poor missile doesn't have a dong!" "We should staple our dongs to it!" "No! Don't staple your dongs to my missile!" -- Jackass North Korea)
smit happens.

:Fuel: bigred, 900MHz R16K, 4GB RAM, V12 DCD, 6.5.30
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probably posted from Image bruce, Quad 2.5GHz PowerPC 970MP, 16GB RAM, Mac OS X 10.4.11
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Re: Setting resolution and enabling GPU with VNC

Unread postby guardian452 » Mon Jul 27, 2015 6:45 am

Right, I even posted a link to such a device above. If I am going to plug something in I may as well just leave a monitor plugged in. (I don't have one of those things, but I do have an otherwise-spare monitor). Passive (e.g. mDP-to-DVI) adapters don't work. Maybe an active (e.g. mDP-to-DLDVI) adapter would, but I don't have one of those.

I assumed surely there was a way to do this without having anything plugged in.

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Re: Setting resolution and enabling GPU with VNC

Unread postby Dennis Nedry » Fri Jul 31, 2015 1:13 am

Yup.

I've filed so many bug reports on this issue alone it's ridiculous. The few responses I got back from Apple Engineering were all along the line of "we're doing things the way we think they should be done and you're clearly wrong".

OS X won't enable a GPU unless it has a monitor plugged into it. There is no way around this, short of hex editing the kernel extensions, but even then I never got anywhere with that. If the local GPU is disabled, then OS X will default to a software rendering system which is capped to 1280x1024 due to severe performance issues (as you've already found out). Those issues are so bad under 10.9 and 10.10 that VNC is virtually unusable without a GPU installed and active in the system.

You can either plug in a monitor, or invest in one of those fake HDMI or Mini DisplayPort "monitor emulators" that trick OS X into thinking a display is connected. HOWEVER, there is a pretty serious caveat with this- if your dongle emulator reports a display size greater then 2560x1600, OS X 10.9 and above will think that it's a HiDPI display and completely screw up your VNC connection to the point of being utterly worthless. There is no way to disable that functionality, so if you're buying a dongle make sure it's not a 4K model (like the CompuLab fit-Headless 4K).

TLDR; remote controlling OS X is a huge bag of hurt. Apple don't give a shit, and there are no workarounds :(. Welcome to the future of consumer oriented computing...

-DN
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Re: Setting resolution and enabling GPU with VNC

Unread postby ClassicHasClass » Fri Jul 31, 2015 12:32 pm

Tiger forever.
smit happens.

:Fuel: bigred, 900MHz R16K, 4GB RAM, V12 DCD, 6.5.30
:Indy: indy, 150MHz R4400SC, 256MB RAM, XL24, 6.5.10
:Indigo2IMP: purplehaze, 175MHz R10000, Solid IMPACT
probably posted from Image bruce, Quad 2.5GHz PowerPC 970MP, 16GB RAM, Mac OS X 10.4.11
plus IBM POWER6 p520 * Apple Network Server 500 * RDI PrecisionBook * BeBox * Solbourne S3000 * Commodore 128 * many more...


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