Archives For display

Going to buy a new monitor or laptop, or want to calculate whether it’s a HiDPI display? Here’s a handy app can help!

I previously thought that 4K and 8K displays are HiDPI, but 720p that I’m being using is LoDPI. It’s 100% wrong! HiDPI, stands for High Dots Per Inch, also known by Apple’s “Retina Display”. Meaning screens with a high resolution in a relatively small format.

A HiDPI monitor may be good for displaying photo images or playing FPS games, but not all software behaves well in high-resolution mode yet. If you’re going to buy a monitor or calculate existing display DPI, then here’s a good app for choice.

It’s ‘Dippi’, a free and open-source GTK4 application developed by a GNOME Foundation member.

With it, you just need to tell: laptop or desktop, monitor size (inches), and screen resolution. Then, it shows you aspect ratio and DPI value, as well as display’s density.

They include:

  • Very Low DPI,
  • Fairly Low DPI,
  • Ideal for LoDPI,
  • Potentially Problematic,
  • Ideal for HiDPI,
  • Fairly High for HiDPI, or
  • Too High DPI

Each value has some texts below to tell the text and UI feeling (too small or too large) at typical viewing distances. As a GTK4 app, it looks good in Ubuntu, Fedora and other Linux with GNOME desktop. And, it automatically changes the UI color between light and dark mode, to follow system color scheme.

How to Install Dippi

Dippi is also available as an online service, you can visit this page to analyze your display.

For most Linux users, it’s available to install as universal flatpak package in

Ubuntu user can do following steps one by one to install the package:

  1. Firstly, press Ctrl+Alt+T on keyboard to open terminal. When it opens, run command to make sure Flatpak is enabled:
    sudo apt install flatpak

    For the old Ubuntu 18.04, add this PPA repository before running apt install command.

  2. Then, install the application by running command:
    flatpak install

    Like normal apps, you can search for and launch it from either start menu or ‘Activities’ overview depends on your desktop environment.

How to Remove Dippi

To remove the app installed as Flatpak, open terminal and run command:

flatpak uninstall --delete-data com.github.cassidyjames.dippi

Also clear useless runtime via flatpak uninstall --unused.

As you may know, Gnome control center (aka settings) has “Fractional Scaling” option since Ubuntu 20.04, allows to change scaling level for HiDPI displays.

By default, user may scale up to 125%, 150%, 175% and 200% to make Ubuntu (or other GNOME based Linux, such as Fedora) to be read easily. In this tutorial, I’m going to introduce “BetterScale”, a command line tool gives more scaling levels.

GNOME by default has 125%, 150%, 175%, 200% scaling levels


BetterScale is a group of bash scripts that helps Gnome & Budgie x11 users perfectly scale their desktop. With it, user may scaling via 110%, 120%, 130%, 140%, 150%, 160%200% levels.

BetterScale uses a similar concept for scaling as macs do by enabling Gnomes experimental scaling support & increasing the graphics framebuffer. It makes your system easily readable while remaining fully clear, crisp and sharp.

BetterScale with more scaling levels

The tool uses xrandr to scale the framebuffer. Which means, it only works for GNOME / Budgie on Xorg. Ubuntu 21.10+ needs to switch to Xorg session at Login Screen for using the tool.

Install & Use BetterScale:

The tool is hosted on Github page. Ubuntu user may press Ctrl+Alt+T on keyboard to open terminal, and run command to grab the source:

git clone

Install git via sudo apt install git for those don’t have it.

Next, run cd command to navigate to the source folder:

cd betterScale

Finally, start the script via command:


Grab and start BetterScale

When it starts, read the description and warning before hitting Enter.

And, it will ask if to install the fix for tearing & mouse flickering for intel GPU. Type “n” to skip it if you don’t have this issue, or answer “Y” and type user password to install the fix.

If you answered ‘Y’ to fix tearing and flicker, log out and back in. Then, re-run the script to get the scaling level selection screen and type number to choose your favorite scaling factor.

BetterScale with more scaling levels

How to Restore:

The tool is in quite earlier stage. It might not work sometimes. I tested it in Ubuntu 21.10 with normal HD display without system’s ‘Fractional Scaling’ enabled. It works mostly but NOT occasionally.

To restore the changes, simply re-run the script and select 10 to set scaling to 100%. Do it twice if it does not work properly!

And remove the “20-intel.conf” file via the command below if you’ve installed the fix for tearing and mouse flickering:

sudo rm -rf /usr/share/X11/xorg.conf.d/20-intel.conf

That’s all. Enjoy!

Install MDM display manager on Ubuntu 13.10

Last updated: July 8, 2013

MDM is the default display manager for Linux Mint. It beautifies Ubuntu’s default boring Login Screen and make it easy to change themes.

To install MDM on Ubuntu 13.10, press Ctrl+Alt+T to open terminal, then follow the below steps:

1.) Add the stable ppa by running this command in terminal:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:gwendal-lebihan-dev/cinnamon-stable

2.) Update the package lists:

sudo apt-get update

3.) Finally install the greeter:

sudo apt-get install mdm

You’ll be prompt to choose MDM as default display manager.


After that, you can download MDM themes from and install them via MDM Preferences utility.