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Author Topic: Anyone Know of a Multi-Monitor Simulator for Software Testing?  (Read 14624 times)

VideoInPicture

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Does anyone know of some software that can allow you to simulate multiple monitors on a single screen? I think this would help me A LOT in my debugging of code I write so that it is multi-monitor compatible.
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mouser

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Re: Anyone Know of a Multi-Monitor Simulator for Software Testing?
« Reply #1 on: July 14, 2008, 08:13:35 AM »
This is actually a GREAT question.  I don't know the answer but look forward to seeing if anyone knows of anything.

jgpaiva

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Re: Anyone Know of a Multi-Monitor Simulator for Software Testing?
« Reply #2 on: July 14, 2008, 08:14:27 AM »
That's a very good idea. Virtual machines should have this feature (I don't know any that does, though :( ).
I would also find it very handy!

y0himba

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Re: Anyone Know of a Multi-Monitor Simulator for Software Testing?
« Reply #3 on: July 14, 2008, 09:06:13 AM »
Split screen workspace? I would love that.  Multi-monitor on a single monitor...please please please code this. :Thmbsup:
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VideoInPicture

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Re: Anyone Know of a Multi-Monitor Simulator for Software Testing?
« Reply #4 on: July 14, 2008, 09:15:44 AM »
I think that this might be kinda tough to code, if it is even possible, because you would have to go pretty low level in Windows to fool it into thinking you have more than one monitor when you only have one.
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y0himba

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Re: Anyone Know of a Multi-Monitor Simulator for Software Testing?
« Reply #5 on: July 14, 2008, 09:18:37 AM »
I don't think you would need to code a driver, although that would be the best way to go....
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jgpaiva

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Re: Anyone Know of a Multi-Monitor Simulator for Software Testing?
« Reply #6 on: July 14, 2008, 09:34:55 AM »
I think you most definitelly would need to code a driver, to add another monitor to the system. Actually, now I think I know how it can be done.
I think I've already seen some programs out there that make a remove VNC connection (similar to remote desktop) appear as another monitor. Thus, if you run a virtual machine, remote VNC to it from it to your real machine (running a VNC server as the 2nd screen) and then use it as another monitor, you'll be able to test stuff in 2 monitors whithout actually having 1 computers! :)

[edit] One example of the kind of VNC software I mentioned is Maxivista, but I think there are others [/edit]
[edit2] made a correction in the post [/edit]

PS: I've used some other software to do this in the past to another computer of mine in the network, and it works fairly well. To the virtual machine, it should be pretty much flawless.
« Last Edit: July 14, 2008, 09:46:40 AM by jgpaiva »

jgpaiva

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Re: Anyone Know of a Multi-Monitor Simulator for Software Testing?
« Reply #7 on: July 14, 2008, 10:10:48 AM »
Ok, found the software I used.
It's ZoneScreen. Unfortunately, the site is unavailable, but you can still download it through archive.org: http://web.archive.o...s.com/zonescreen.htm

mwb1100

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Re: Anyone Know of a Multi-Monitor Simulator for Software Testing?
« Reply #8 on: July 14, 2008, 10:28:35 AM »
SplitView does this (note - I have not tried this software), but it's not free  - $40:

http://www.splitview...iew-Personal-Edition

VideoInPicture

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Re: Anyone Know of a Multi-Monitor Simulator for Software Testing?
« Reply #9 on: July 14, 2008, 10:32:11 AM »
Wow, good finds. I'll have to try one out.
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jgpaiva

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Re: Anyone Know of a Multi-Monitor Simulator for Software Testing?
« Reply #10 on: July 14, 2008, 10:36:34 AM »
mwb1100: I think SplitView doesn't really create 2 monitors in one, it's just the way they describe it.
It's actually very similar to my own GridMove ;)

mouser

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Re: Anyone Know of a Multi-Monitor Simulator for Software Testing?
« Reply #11 on: August 16, 2008, 04:34:42 AM »
rl2e found another one in another thread:
http://www.ishadow.c...bid/115/Default.aspx
« Last Edit: August 16, 2008, 04:37:00 AM by mouser »

Deozaan

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Re: Anyone Know of a Multi-Monitor Simulator for Software Testing?
« Reply #12 on: August 16, 2008, 01:11:37 PM »
Here's a hardware solution that doesn't require two monitors:

If your video card has two outputs and your monitor has two inputs you can enable dual monitors by plugging both outputs into your single monitor. Then just click the button on the monitor that switches what input to display.


Dormouse

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Re: Anyone Know of a Multi-Monitor Simulator for Software Testing?
« Reply #13 on: August 17, 2008, 06:05:09 AM »
I suspect the hardware solution is best. It should be possible to get hold of a 2nd monitor cheaply (ie free), if you know a lot of people who have had computers a while. Lots of people have switched from CRT to flatscreen and just kept their old screens somewhere in case they were ever needed; lots of other people just throw them out, and it is only a question of picking one up. Quality etc won't matter that much if you just use if for testing, but you will need the space to store it.

Only potential problem is having the videocard with 2 outputs, if you don't already have one; not so easy to get one of those for nothing, but it can be done quite cheaply.

4wd

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Re: Anyone Know of a Multi-Monitor Simulator for Software Testing?
« Reply #14 on: August 17, 2008, 07:26:54 PM »
Here's a hardware solution that doesn't require two monitors:

If your video card has two outputs and your monitor has two inputs you can enable dual monitors by plugging both outputs into your single monitor. Then just click the button on the monitor that switches what input to display.

Another idea: Most gfx cards have composite/SVideo out of some kind, plug it in to a TV :)

Another idea: Plug the composite/SVideo out into the input of your TV tuner card.

IIRC, the drivers will allow you use the TV as a second monitor, but you might be required to set your normal monitor to the same resolution as the TV output, (used to be 800x600 or 1024x768 - before HDTVs anyway).
« Last Edit: August 17, 2008, 07:30:09 PM by 4wd »

mouser

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Re: Anyone Know of a Multi-Monitor Simulator for Software Testing?
« Reply #15 on: September 26, 2011, 11:13:24 AM »
The latest VmWare Workstation and VirtualBox virtual machine applications can simulate multiple monitors -- making them once again essential tools for developers.

From VirtualBox help:
http://www.virtualbo...org/manual/ch03.html
Quote
With this setting [MonitorCount] VirtualBox can provide more than one virtual monitor to a virtual machine. If a guest operating system (such as Windows) supports multiple attached monitors, VirtualBox can pretend that multiple virtual monitors are present.[14] Up to 8 such virtual monitors are supported.

jgpaiva

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Re: Anyone Know of a Multi-Monitor Simulator for Software Testing?
« Reply #16 on: September 27, 2011, 06:03:46 AM »
The latest VmWare Workstation and VirtualBox virtual machine applications can simulate multiple monitors -- making them once again essential tools for developers.
That's awesome! Thanks for the heads-up!

mouser

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Re: Anyone Know of a Multi-Monitor Simulator for Software Testing?
« Reply #17 on: September 27, 2011, 08:54:27 AM »
Skwire and i were looking at it yesterday and had trouble getting the virtualbox implementation to work -- just got black screens on the simulated extra monitors.  On VmWare workstation we were both able to get it to work.

If someone figures out how to get it to work in virtualbox, please share!

skwire

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Re: Anyone Know of a Multi-Monitor Simulator for Software Testing?
« Reply #18 on: September 27, 2011, 11:05:27 AM »
Just to reiterate:

VirtualBox: I was not able to get VirtualBox working (host: XP/SP3/32-bit, guest: XP/SP3/32-bit).  I configured extra monitors as per the help file but only got black screens for the extra virtual monitors.  Going into the Display Properties in the guest OS did not show any sign that multiple monitors were present or detected.  Tested with between two and four monitors along with 2D and 3D options enabled and disabled.

VMWare: I was able to get this working with up to eight virtual monitors (host: XP/SP3/32-bit, guest: Win7/32-bit).  After setting it up for multiple virtual monitors, I did have to go into the Screen Resolution applet under Windows 7, add the new monitors, and then extend them as part of the desktop.  Typical stuff, really, when dealing with multiple real monitors.  It worked a treat, too.  I was even able to identify a multi-monitor related bug in one of my programs and fix it.  Very very cool.

Also, VirtualBox seems to handle each virtual monitor in its own separate window while VMWare keeps them all within one, potentially huge, window.  Anybody want screenshots of what I'm talking about?
« Last Edit: September 27, 2011, 11:23:21 AM by skwire »

Ath

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Re: Anyone Know of a Multi-Monitor Simulator for Software Testing?
« Reply #19 on: September 27, 2011, 03:37:13 PM »
I just set up a VirtualBox (4.1.2 with extension pack) with Windows 7 x64 and configured 4 monitors. The Windows Update was crap, as usual on a pre-SP1 install, but I've got 4 screens that I can put stuff on.

Specialties:
  • Choose ICH9 chipset where applicable
  • Set video memory to 128 MB (max)
  • Enabled all video hardware acceleration options available (2D Video and 3D)
  • Installed the VBox Guest extensions stuff (not yet with the 3D drivers, needs safe mode apparently)
  • Enabled the extra monitors, like skwire did

Maybe I'll try to break it by setting up the DisplayLink drivers for the MIMO touch-screen 8)

skwire

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Re: Anyone Know of a Multi-Monitor Simulator for Software Testing?
« Reply #20 on: September 27, 2011, 04:25:57 PM »
I got it to work as well in VirtualBox.  I thought I had the Guest Additions installed but I double-checked and they were not.  Once I installed them for the XP guest OS, it worked as expected.  I also much prefer VirtualBox's way of handling each virtual monitor in a separate window.  Much easier to arrange and deal with.