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Multiple Monitor support in Longhorn

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  • User profile image
    tsilb

    Hey, any public details of new multiple monitor support in Longhorn?  My main rig runs five screens so any enhanced functionality is rather exciting to me.

    As we all know, real life exists in 3D workspace.  With more deskspace on my computer, I was wondering if the new Longhorn APIs will have new ways to integrate 3D audio with large amounts of 3D video?  When your desktop is 7 feet wide you have alot of opportunities for enhancing the integration there.  For instance, if a window pops up on the right side of my deskspace, maybe make it sound like that window popped up "over there somewhere" would be nice.  Just a thought.

    Any details of this aspect of development would be greatly appreciated.  Meanwhile, I think I'll start investigating how to make a TSR do that in XP.

  • User profile image
    Minh

    tsilb wrote:
    Meanwhile, I think I'll start investigating how to make a TSR do that in XP.
    TSR = Terminate & Stay Resident ?

  • User profile image
    eagle

    I met some of the Longhorn team yesterday at lunch and they said YES to supporting more monitors.

  • User profile image
    tsilb

    Wow, fast replies!

    Minh wrote:
    tsilb wrote: Meanwhile, I think I'll start investigating how to make a TSR do that in XP.
    TSR = Terminate & Stay Resident ?


    Precisely.  Seems worthy of at least a good try.

    eagle wrote:

    I met some of the Longhorn team yesterday at lunch and they said YES to supporting more monitors.


    Outstanding. Other than the sweet sweet stuff I've been seeing from the VIBE team, anything else that users of freakishly large desktops will find spiffy from an entertainment and productivity viewpoint?  The stuff I've been seeing for graphics and multitasking are all fine and dandy, but personally with the 8704x1200 pixels I have access too, I generally just keep all open tasks up and visible. 

    You may be familiar with a product called UltraMon (www.realtimesoft.com). I hope to see some of its functionality built into Longhorn in addition to these projects: High Density Cursor, Mouse Ether (This one would be a HUGE help), and the Groupbar.  These projects all seem useful.  Obviously, all users won't see benefit from them, but if I could at least download a build or enable it in the control panel somewhere that would be a great benefit to me as a consumer.

    I have more rants and ravings about incorporating multi-monitor support into Windows, I will post them as they happen by my thought processes.  I would like to point out that enhancing multimon capabilities as I've seen (in theoretical project videos, whitepapers, but still not in practice) is a great relief for me.  I appreciate Microsoft's final realization that "Yes you can do it, good luck" wasn't the best approach, as that's pretty much what I've seen since Windows 98.  Thanks.

  • User profile image
    Sven Groot

    tsilb wrote:
    Wow, fast replies!

    Minh wrote:
    tsilb wrote: Meanwhile, I think I'll start investigating how to make a TSR do that in XP.
    TSR = Terminate & Stay Resident ?


    Precisely.  Seems worthy of at least a good try.

    Uhm... there's no such thing as a TSR in Windows. There's no use for them in a true multitasking environment. TSR's died, and rightfully so, together with DOS.

  • User profile image
    tsilb

    Okay, maybe I worded that poorly.  How about "A program that sits quietly in the background and redirects audio to the proper mix levels based on where a sound comes from"?

    Of course, such a program would need extensively verbose controls to tell it the specific layout of the speakers in relation to the screens in total 3D.  Ideally, if my monitors wrap around me 180 degrees and my Right Rear speaker is on the far right, a popup behind me and to the right would make a sound from back there, where as a popup front and center would create sound from my front center speaker.

    This would be good for tracking where Explorer windows open, as users don't always remember which screen that window was last located on.  Website and software audio could ideally be implemented to do this as well.

    Anyone out there experimented with this? I'm very new to C# and haven't used a different language in about 5 years.

  • User profile image
    tsilb

    Grrr.  And why won't Channel9 let me set this thread as 'watched'?

  • User profile image
    figuerres

    Sven Groot wrote:
    tsilb wrote: Wow, fast replies!

    Minh wrote:
    tsilb wrote: Meanwhile, I think I'll start investigating how to make a TSR do that in XP.
    TSR = Terminate & Stay Resident ?


    Precisely.  Seems worthy of at least a good try.

    Uhm... there's no such thing as a TSR in Windows. There's no use for them in a true multitasking environment. TSR's died, and rightfully so, together with DOS.


    well as such yes they are dead.... but there are two things that are very much "Like" the old tsr's in windows:

    Services -- do work in the back ground -- like a tsr could do but a service is way better at that.

    plugins -- like doc handlers, system / shell extensions and other things that you want to use and not think of as an "app".

    Also much abused is the stuff that you can click on next to the clock... task-tray pop-up stuff.

    so the tech of TSR is old but the functions live on.

  • User profile image
    tsilb

    figuerres wrote:

    well as such yes they are dead.... but there are two things that are very much "Like" the old tsr's in windows:

    Services -- do work in the back ground -- like a tsr could do but a service is way better at that.

    plugins -- like doc handlers, system / shell extensions and other things that you want to use and not think of as an "app".

    Also much abused is the stuff that you can click on next to the clock... task-tray pop-up stuff.

    so the tech of TSR is old but the functions live on.


    This is more along the lines of what I meant.  I'll have to watch my wording when dealing with the "smarter than the average bear" types that traverse websites such as Channel 9.

    Another idea that I just got is when a window pops up, there could be one of those annoying corner popups (a la Messenger, Trillian, or Systray balloons) that would show me graphically where the new window is. 

    Hopefully Microsoft will soon stop these popups from interfering with full-screen apps such as games.  In these situations, there is sometimes a strange video glitch where parts of the popup show up on top of my game, and if I click anywhere claimed by that popup it switches me out of my full-screen app.  This is the primary reason I turn off all notifications and balloon popups. Just another random thought.         

  • User profile image
    Sven Groot

    I didn't mean to imply that background workers are bad. I meant that TSRs were a less than ideal way to do it. TSRs are a necessity for a single-task OS like DOS. Plugins don't fall into the same category as a TSR. Things like services, however, do. However, services and drivers stay resident, but they do not terminate to achieve their background-ness. They don't need to in order to achieve that in a multi-tasked OS such as Windows. Hence, services are not TSRs. They have a similar function most of the time, but the technological thing that is a TSR does not exist anymore.

  • User profile image
    tsilb

    Exactly. I just coined the wrong term.  When a new functionality comes along, I subconciously relate that to the closest experiences I've had.  Thus, when I think of a background service or minimized app (ones that are still doing something) my mind thinks "Oh, that works kind of like a TSR".

  • User profile image
    andokai

    3D workspace and no mention of looking glass? someone's not doing their job. Sorry cheap shot Smiley

  • User profile image
    HellSnoopy

    Can I ask why do you have so many monitors ?
    I could see the use of 2 or 3 .. but 5 looks like overkill to me.

    [EDITE] OMG , my firefox is finaly working here ...

  • User profile image
    tsilb

    An excellent question.  Why?  I think the more pressing issue here is, why not?  Why haven't you done it yet?  Other than the geek factor, there are some applications that gain productivity enhancements:

    CAD:  As oppposed to the old 4-up view, I can have top, front, side, and 3D / Perspective views fullscreen on their own monitors while still watching a full-screen video in WinAmp (Sorry Bill, I don't like being unable to go fullscreen and send my focus elsewhere). 

    Browsing: I like to view the main website I'm looking at over to the left, then second, third, fourth, and sometimes fifth or sixth levels deep worth of links in other windows to the right (One window level to the right per link level).  For instance. Slashdot links to a new article.  Since Trillian and my taskbar take up half the left side of my left monitor, the linked article goes on the left side of monitor 2.  That article links to Channel9, that goes on the right side of monitor 2.  That links to a bazillion other things, etc etc.  Plus I can also keep tabs on my Outlook, task manager, open shares (LAN and wLAN running around here). 

    MSTSC:  I don't like pivoting and swiveling more than I need to.  I run remote desktop windows to my secondary systems.  Four 800x600 windows will fit into a 1920x1200 with a little maneuvering room.

    Mostly though, it's to be a geek.  I get giddy when I watch the Starfield screen saver 8700 pixels wide.  The left and right screens look like side windows. 

    Future plans:  Once I'm able to take over the other half of the lab (third bedroom), I intend to wrap myself 270 degrees in monitors; have three keyboards and mice: One center, one left, one right; so I don't have to take them with me when I swivel.  I would just set up a second tier above the others, but I prefer swiveling to arching my neck; it's less painful.

    I'm a hardware geek.  I do new things because they excite me.  To me there is no greater reason to do something than to learn something, or because I simply haven't done it before.  I'm the kind of guy you see creating ball lightning in the microwave ($2.50 at a thrift shop, sure).  My friends are all geeks and sadly enough my bedroom consists of storage boxes and a mattress in the corner.  As in most things in life, it's all about priorities.

  • User profile image
    tsilb

    andokai wrote:
    3D workspace and no mention of looking glass? someone's not doing their job. Sorry cheap shot


    I'll revel about looking glass (Aero?) when I see some more videos that don't have browser scrolling bugs and look a bit more verbose.  Do these angled windows get locked at a specific angle?  I'm the kind of geek who needs full control over these things. Sure, it'll be cool, but I don't get excited about things until I can get them.  I'm too cheap to spring for an MSDN subscription, but when it leaks out and looks relatively stable (crashes less than NT4), we'll see what's what and who's who around this lab.  In the meantime, I'm sitting back enjoying the 'classic' theme on XP SP2 because Luna is ugly.  Slate is ugly.  Two inch titlebars are ugly.  It's no wonder displays keep scaling up in resolution, look what Microsoft is doing to our real estate!

    Not to say they're not doing amazing things.  Keep the good stuff coming, but jeez man, give me some options from time to time.  I saw Longhorn build 4054 (at a subscribing paid friend's house of course) and couldn't find a 'view as list' option in an explorer window.  PLEASE tell me that's not going away.  Some of my folders have thousands of files and I know who and where they are.  I love to rant, but just keep this in mind: Not all productivity comes from the mouse.  Keep us geeky keyboard folks in mind.  The folks who look down on those who call themselves "power users" because they installed TweakUI and know where to find their startup files.  Keep the Advanced geeks in mind. 

    My ultimate dream for Windows is to have a "Normal Mode" for the novice folks and those who think they're power users but aren't; and an "Expert Mode" for people who use this new DOS rip-off frequently and want total and unequivical control over every IRQ, every memory address, every background process.  The more user-friendly Windows gets, the less geeky I feel.  I don't want to end up going back to TV for a hobby instead!

  • User profile image
    tsilb

    No replies for a couple days, thought I'd refresh the thread.  Still looking for more details.  I know about the cool stuff coming from VIBE, looking for additional info on Longhorn's extended support for Multi-Monitors.

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