What video cards for a Desktop computer compatible with Linux can support Dual Monitors?

Our start up needs to use two monitors but our default enviroment needs two monitors, can somebody recommend a cheap Video Card that could help us to use two monitors?


It's been years since I last saw a graphics card that wasn't properly supported on Linux, and quite a while since I last saw a single-framebuffer card. The two biggest off-board chipsets, nVidia and AMD (ex ATI) both offer well-supported multi-screen configurations for X11 on Linux (closed-source binary drivers may be needed to enable all features on some chipsets).

After a tiny amount of research, I found a sub-£20 card with a well-known chipset and three ports (VGA, HDMI, DVI). You can attach the two digital outputs to two monitors and they'll work fine.

I'd optimise on the feature set of the cards, not the availability of double framebuffers.

Also, if your workstations have on-board video, and depending on your needs, you can get a card with a single framebuffer (assuming you can find them) and get two displays that way — they don't need to be provided by the same card!

  • A few years ago (I haven't been keeping current) the free nv driver couldn't handle more than one head on Nvidia, you had to use the proprietary nvidia driver. What's the situation now with nouveau? Jan 14 '12 at 23:52
  • possible according to nouveau.freedesktop.org/wiki/FeatureMatrix (at least thats what i read from the table)
    – Baarn
    Jan 15 '12 at 0:44
  • My only current machine with an nVidia card and two monitors runs on the proprietary driver. When it comes to getting your work done, I see nothing wrong with that, at least until nouveau catches up. There are Debian/Ubuntu packages that download the driver, install it, and keep it up to date, so it's not too bad at all. These days, it plays well with Xorg and friends.
    – Alexios
    Jan 15 '12 at 1:08

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