PC-BSD and 4K – Oh my!

I had recently seen some chatter on IRC about 4K monitor support. One of the people discussing stated that PC-BSD didn’t support 4K monitors, which was curious to me, since I hadn’t tried it yet. This week I did something about that, and ended up getting two 4K monitors and a new video card (With triple DisplayPort) to do some testing.

The Hardware

2x – ASUS PB287Q 28-Inch Screen LED-Lit 4K Monitor (Amazon)

Zotac GeForce GTX 960 2GB GDDR5 PCI Express 3.0 HDMI DVI DisplayPort (Amazon)

The Setup

The setup process was thus:

1. Remove the old monitors and video card

2. Connect the new monitors and video card

3. Go into monitor menus – Enable DisplayPort 1.2 mode

4. Boot up, selecting the “Run Display Wizard” option at the boot-loader.

5. Click “Accept”

That’s it! The display wizard properly detected both 4k monitors, and set them up in a proper dual-head configuration. Logging into KDE resulted in it detecting the new monitors, and automatically re-configuring the display to take advantage of the new resolution. At this point the system was fully usable, font-scaling even worked properly for Firefox and such.

Having 4K setup I did find a few minor issues, which are already being fixed in time for PC-BSD 10.1.2 next week, such as changing the mouse cursor to something which supports larger sizes /Β  resolutions better. The only real hiccup was figuring out that the monitor ships with DisplayPort set to 1.1 mode, only giving 30hz mode out of box. Changing that in the monitors menus to DisplayPort 1.2 mode, enabled 60hz, giving a silky-smooth desktop experience at 4K resolutions. Not sure if that is something typical of all 4K monitors, or just this model in particular, but if you can’t go beyond 30hz, you may want to check that in your monitor documentation.

Anyway, I hope this information is of use to anybody else who is thinking of taking the 4K plunge. Of course I would love additional feedback from other users who are running 4K, to see if there are other tweaks we can make for optimal support out of box. Let us know on the bug tracker, mailing lists or new forums!

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Written by Kris Moore. Posted in 10.1, hardware, Uncategorized

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Comments (11)

  • sg1efc
    April 22, 2015 at 9:16 am |

    Cool, nothing like new Tech Toys to play around with. πŸ™‚ How about Lumina, did Lumina also recognize the new hardware?

    • April 22, 2015 at 9:59 am |

      It worked for the most part, had to increase panel size, fonts all looked fine. Worst issue was the fluxbox window decorations, way too small, but changing to another theme helped that.

      • sg1efc
        April 22, 2015 at 10:21 am |

        Ok cool, Thanks. πŸ™‚

  • Rick Hanson
    April 22, 2015 at 10:12 am |

    So Kris, is the “Oh My!” a Wizard Of Oz “Oh My!” or a George Takei “Oh My!”. πŸ™‚ jk. Thanks for the info! –Rick

    • April 22, 2015 at 10:34 am |

      Whichever is funnier as you read it πŸ˜‰

  • April 22, 2015 at 7:18 pm |

    I kinda agree with Rick Hanson. Kris has helped me out on a number of issues so at the present time my system runs flawless. It’s only the locale settings and that the USB connecters don’t work in other than local in default. But if I’ve understood it right that’s fixed in the new update.

    The more I use and learn about PC-BSD the more i love it.

    Just one question, or no, a suggestion. I’m missing a rest and sleep power save mode in the system also with timing settings.
    There are two alternatives in the “leave”-menu (KDE) for rest and sleep, but they are not active.
    I’m using the XScreensaver, don’t know if that affects anything.

    • Ken Moore
      April 23, 2015 at 8:46 am |

      Robert Β» With the new version of PC-BSD, you can use the “pc-sysconfig” CLI tool to probe whether your system supports suspending, and put it into the suspend state. This has also been integrated into the new Lumina version so that you get a “suspend” button along with the rest of the log out/restart/shutdown options if your system supports it.

  • Dinsdale
    April 22, 2015 at 10:07 pm |

    Lumia 4K support?

  • JohnnyK
    April 24, 2015 at 6:08 am |

    When I first read this I thought it was another April fools joke but now that others have posted I guess it’s for real. Oh great now I have to get a project that justifies a 4K monitor. with 4k you can put a bunch of code on the larger screen. Anyway all this new stuff has me drooling. I can’t wait for the new build to come out.

  • DJ9
    April 24, 2015 at 1:26 pm |

    I’m having hardware envy. πŸ˜‰

    I liked the glow of your new monitors on BSD Now. Congrats!

  • […] PC-BSD and 4K β€” OhΒ my! […]

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