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I'm using gnome under Arch Linux in my laptop with a 1920*1080 monitor on the left of it, I set the monitor as my primary display in GNOME and everything works fine after I log in. However, GDM displays my log-in dialogue on my lap-top screen every time, and I noticed that my monitor was set defaultly on the right side of my laptop. I searched and found someone said mouse's position may have effect, which did not work on me. Can anybody help?

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@don_crissti, I think you should post this as an answer and I will accept it. – Elderry Jul 28 '13 at 9:42

I was running into the same issues with my desktop PC. I have a second screen attached to it, which in only use to view movies on and is really far from my computer and hard to see.

@don-crissti pointed out correctly that it is an issue with the xorg.conf. So I will write this up as an answer.

For me it was as easy as running the nvidia-settings agent again. Set up one screen as primary display and overwrite my existing xorg.conf.

The result is a configuration looking like this (only the relevent section shown here):

Section "Monitor"
    # HorizSync source: edid, VertRefresh source: edid
    Identifier     "Monitor0"
    VendorName     "Unknown"
    ModelName      "Samsung SMBX2335"
    HorizSync       30.0 - 81.0
    VertRefresh     56.0 - 75.0
    Option         "DPMS"

Section "Device"
    Identifier     "Device0"
    Driver         "nvidia"
    VendorName     "NVIDIA Corporation"
    BoardName      "GeForce GTX 580"

Section "Screen"
    Identifier     "Screen0"
    Device         "Device0"
    Monitor        "Monitor0"
    DefaultDepth    24
    Option         "Stereo" "0"
    Option         "nvidiaXineramaInfoOrder" "DFP-0"
    Option         "metamodes" "DVI-I-2: nvidia-auto-select +0+0, DVI-I-3: 1920x1080 +0+0"
    Option         "SLI" "Off"
    Option         "MultiGPU" "Off"
    Option         "BaseMosaic" "off"
    SubSection     "Display"
        Depth       24

So basically there are two steps to do:

  1. Setup your Display in the Monitor section.
  2. Refer to that Display in the Screen section.

Then reboot or restart your XServer to apply those new settings.

Hope that helps!

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