GSoC Idea: Adding support for DMX screens to dix

Jamey Sharp jamey at
Mon Mar 29 12:32:44 PDT 2010

On Mon, Mar 29, 2010 at 12:10 PM, Cody Maloney
<cmaloney at> wrote:
> Currently the DMX X server works well enough to get display walls up
> and running. What I'd like to do is make it so that from a running X
> server you can dynamically add and remove DMX screens, without the
> need of the seperate DMX proxy server. This would be useful for
> instance to setup/use network screens/projectors. In addition, over it
> could move to replace the dmx X server which would mean that dmx would
> always be up to date with modern extensions. I'm not sure how feasible
> it is to add it to dix, and if there's a lot of work that needs to be
> done before it could happen (Removing MAXSCREENS?).

Awesome. I've only glanced over what's needed for this, but it's
something I'd like to see happen.

It seems to me that there are two substantial projects here, and I
think they're completely independent.

For one thing, I don't think there's currently an video driver
that does what Xephyr or Xnest do, and I'd love to see one. Preferably
implemented using XCB, of course. ;-) If we had such a driver, would
that be enough to replace Xdmx with a static xorg.conf? I'd guess the
Xinerama implementation should take care of most of the work, but
maybe it needs more?

The other piece I see is screen hotplug. It would be broadly useful to
be able to add and remove screens from a running X server--not just
for dynamic DMX, but also for USB video peripherals and other
hotpluggable devices. For that to be most useful, yes, MAXSCREENS
should die, but I think you can treat that as yet another project.

I suspect either of those projects alone is easily big enough for
GSoC--possibly too big. A narrow focus is important.


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