# What happened to my Ctrl-+/- zoom in Xorg?

Older X.org and XFree86 used to have this neat feature where pressing Ctrl+<numpad +> and Ctrl+<numpad -> would cycle through the screen modes defined in your config file in the "Screen" section, effectively switching screen modes on the fly and letting you pan around the full virtual screen size with the mouse.

This was a really useful feature for zooming in on small details, or to blow up videos without incurring high CPU overhead.

But since about X.org 1.7 this feature seems to be missing.  I've been researching and discovered why it's missing, and what to do about it.

# Awesome KDE, Java composite hacks

I've been experimenting with the awesome tiling window manager as a replacement to KDE's kwin, and I've managed to hack together a recipe for getting them up an running. It's surprisingly simple, although the learing curve was a little steep.

This post documents what I've done to get things working nicely with the basic awesome config. No customisations here, see the awesome wiki for some ideas.

There is lots of information on the Web about concurrent programming with Java (or with other languages on the JVM). This post is a list of links I have found helpful and/or interesting.

# Dark colours in NetBeans

Okay I'm still on the hunt for the elusive dark colour look-and-feel for NetBeans. I found this site that has great information about the NimROD L&F. This sets the widgets to a dark colour (or you could customise your own colours with NimROD).

Note that this is separate from the NetBeans colour themes which control editor colours. For that, I quite like Twilight and Aloha, although each needs tweaking to fix highlight colours for things such as breakpoints and step colours, or for highlighting code differences. Still, it's a good start.

# KDE Konsole's title bar and prompt

I spent the past hour fiddling with Konsole, trying to get it to honor my Bash prompt in the title bar (using the usual ESC char tricks you can find anywhere). Finally found it: In the Profile settings, under Tabs, change the tab tiles to %w (or pick "Window title set by Shell" from the drop-down Insert list to the right).

# OpenSSH slow logins and DNS

There is a feature of OpenSSH, enabled by default, that causes the ssh daemon to do a name lookup for the client and confirm that it matches its IP address. This is supposed to check against some sort of IP spoof during SSH login attacks.  However on my local network which lacks a DNS, it results in lengthy delays during logins.

# MS-Windows focus-follows-mouse Registry hacks

I like the "focus follows mouse" window-focussing model from X11, because

• I don't have to click on the window, just move the mouse and the window it's over is focussed
• I can focus a window without bringing it to the front, which is sometimes handy. If I want it in front, I can click it.

However MS-Windows follows the old-fashioned, Macintosh/Smalltalk style of having users click on a window to focus it for the keyboard. How do you make MS-Windows behave more like X11?

# Registering local DTDs or XML schemas with NetBeans

The NetBeans online help describes the steps for registering a local DTD or XML file with NetBeans' DTDs and XML Schemas Manager. It's succinct and to the point, but for the slow people in the room it's a bit confusing. So here's my tip for registering a local DTD file with NetBeans so that you can use NetBeans' awesome XML validation and completion features.

# XMing screen size and changing multiple monitors

My work's notebook (Windows XP) is running Xming as it's X11 server, and it travels between work, home and on the train.

My work office has a docking station and a rotating second display. Typically if I start Xming with this display plugged in, Xming will adjust it's screen size to use both displays, but if I start it without the screen plugged in, it'll size to just the notebook screen. If I later add the 2nd screen (by docking the notebook), Xming won't use it without a restart. Also if I rotate the screen, only the top 1200 pixels will be used by Xming.

The solution is to specify a screen size to begin with that is as wide and tall as both of the screens. On my docked notebook the two displays are the notebook's display (1920x1200 pixels)  and 2nd display (1600x1200 pixels, which rotates to 1200x1600). So that means the combined screen width is 3520 pixels, and the tallest screen hight is 1600 pixels. Specify this to Xming when it starts:

path\to\xming.exe :0 -clipboard -multiwindow -screen 0 3520x1600

Now I can add/remove/rotate the second screen and still use all of it without restarting Xming.

# Multiple Xming servers on a single Windows host

One use-case we have at work for Xming is to be the X11 server on a Windows RDP terminal server. For security reasons (don't ask!) we can only access certain Unix hosts via an RDP session from our desktops, not directly over the campus LAN. So, we installed Xming on the TS and it works well. Except if two or more people wish to use it at once. Then it's first come, first served.