Running Maelstrom (or other old low-res games) fullscreen changes screen resolution

Recently, I was checking out some of the open-source games available in the Ubuntu repos and found the GPLed version of Maelstrom. It’s a pretty fun little game so I decided to keep it. :slight_smile:

Anyway, I’ve noticed that if I run Maelstrom fullscreen (with the -fullscreen option or toggling using Alt+Return in the game), my display is resized to Maelstrom’s resolution—a glorious 640 x 480 or abouts. Logging out and logging back in (or restarting X with Ctrl+Alt+Backspace and logging back in) restores my original resolution. On this computer that is 1366 x 768. I’m running UM 16.04 LTS. Everything stays normal if I play the game in windowed mode (which is fairly small).

I’ve noticed this behavior with every game with a lower fullscreen resolution than my normal resolution. On my vintage Mac, Maelstrom GPL does not do this. Is there a fix for this in UM, or should I file a bug report? It’s not a big deal, but it is somewhat annoying. :smiley:

It’s not something limited to Maelstrom. In fact, I’ve seen this exact behaviour from numerous other titles (games crashing in WINE is a good way to trigger it) and even from non-game graphical applications (demoscene in particular).

I’ve also seen it happen in other distributions than Ubuntu MATE. It’s not MATE that is part of the cause. It’s in fact the display server, I believe. Ending in a bit of a confused state about what resolution you want. :wink:

Not sure how to exactly fix it, I never have. I learned to live with it. Although I’m a bit more rude in restoring the resolution: terminal -> kill -9 -1

Which basically is the same thing you’re doing, relogging. Just more bluntly. :wink:


If you’re using the binary NVidia drivers, you can use the command nvidia-settings -l to load the previously saved settings, restoring the original resolution.

Yeah, I noticed the same behavior in Vectroids and Tux Commander (I only care for Maelstrom though :D). I think it tends to happen with any app that uses a different resolution than my base resolution.

I suspect this as well. It’s probably X getting confused about what resolution to use. Maybe Wayland will avoid this behavior (though it had its own annoying bugs last time I used it on Fedora 25).

Ha ha, I avoid kill -9 when I can. Relogging seems a bit nicer. :wink: I thought about resetting the resolution manually (or even replacing the command to start Maelstrom with a script to resize the resolution after the program exits) but I’d rather just reload my preferred resolution settings than risk confusing X further.

I’m using the Intel open source drivers (I’m one integrated Intel graphics). I suspect there might be a similar command to restore my settings but I have no idea what it is! Relogging restores things just fine though. :slight_smile:

[quote=“Mechanizoid, post:4, topic:13731”]Ha ha, I avoid kill -9 when I can. Relogging seems a bit nicer.[/quote]Relogging definitely is nicer but I prefer kill -9 -1 to ensure no lingering or orphaned processes, slowly piling up over time. Whereas it’s rude, it’s also very thorough. I’m just picky like that.

And, I regularly switch between different graphics stacks without rebooting. For which kill -9 -1 is also a more thorough way to ensure a full reload of X.[quote=“Mechanizoid, post:4, topic:13731”]I thought about resetting the resolution manually[/quote]This should actually be fine. You should be allowed, without X becoming confused that is, to specify a resolution to use. If even that is too much for X to handle without becoming confused, it’d be an even worse display server than I already think it is.

Honestly, at this time, it is my sole gripe with the entire Linux ecosystem. I just hate Xorg. The protocol is outdated and bloated and the implementation in the Xorg display server is borderline stable at best.

Oh, yeah, I see. After killing the parents, you gotta purge the orphans. :laughing: I tend to shut down my computer when I’m finished using it, so I’m not too worried about this—all the crud will get cleared out on the next reboot. Everyone has a different style though!

Yeah, it definitely seems to be high time to replace Xorg. What do you think of the Wayland graphics stack? When I was on Fedora 25, we’d already been switched over to Wayland as the default, though you could still pick Xorg at login. It seemed pretty smooth overall, but there were some annoying bugs and rough edges. I almost felt they pushed Wayland out too fast. I am eager to try it again, though, especially when Ubuntu 18.04 rolls around.

Still a bit conflicted about Gnome TBH, though. XD Looking forward to when Wayland comes to Mate.