n67
Posts: 938
Joined: Mon Oct 30, 2017 4:55 pm

How to increase the size of the virtual consoles (NOT X!!)

Tue Aug 21, 2018 11:55 pm

The command to use to check this: (as root) stty size -F /dev/tty1

On most machines, this gives a pair of pretty big numbers - e.g., 61 228

This means that tty1 (and each of the other virtual consoles) is 61 rows and 228 columns in size.

However, on one of my RPis, it returns 27 and 62. I need it to be bigger (say, as above, something like 61 and 228).

In config.txt, I find:

Code: Select all

# uncomment to force a console size. By default it will be display's size minus
# overscan.
#framebuffer_width=1280
#framebuffer_height=720

There are no other lines containing the word "frame".

So, two questions:

1) How can I find out what those values are set to now? (since the above lines are commented out; it must be getting and setting these values somewhere else)

2) Will changing them increase the size of the virtual consoles? If so, what should I set them to?

P.S. This is a Pi Zero running Raspbian, connected to a small HDMI screen. I'm guessing that the small size of the HDMI screen is what is causing it to default to a small screen size for the VCs.
"L'enfer, c'est les autres"

G fytc hsqr rum umpbq rm qyw rm rfc kmbq md rfgq dmpsk:

Epmu Sn!

J lnacjrw njbruh-carppnanm vxm rb mnuncrwp vh yxbcb!

ejolson
Posts: 4498
Joined: Tue Mar 18, 2014 11:47 am

Re: How to increase the size of the virtual consoles (NOT X!!)

Wed Aug 22, 2018 2:52 am

n67 wrote:
Tue Aug 21, 2018 11:55 pm
The command to use to check this: (as root) stty size -F /dev/tty1

On most machines, this gives a pair of pretty big numbers - e.g., 61 228

This means that tty1 (and each of the other virtual consoles) is 61 rows and 228 columns in size.

However, on one of my RPis, it returns 27 and 62. I need it to be bigger (say, as above, something like 61 and 228).

In config.txt, I find:

Code: Select all

# uncomment to force a console size. By default it will be display's size minus
# overscan.
#framebuffer_width=1280
#framebuffer_height=720

There are no other lines containing the word "frame".

So, two questions:

1) How can I find out what those values are set to now? (since the above lines are commented out; it must be getting and setting these values somewhere else)

2) Will changing them increase the size of the virtual consoles? If so, what should I set them to?

P.S. This is a Pi Zero running Raspbian, connected to a small HDMI screen. I'm guessing that the small size of the HDMI screen is what is causing it to default to a small screen size for the VCs.
It should be possible to make the screen appear larger using a magnifying glass from Poundland.

If you need more letters to display at a time try a smaller font. I have not checked my Pi, but on Debian the font size can be specified in the /etc/defaults/console file.

n67
Posts: 938
Joined: Mon Oct 30, 2017 4:55 pm

Re: How to increase the size of the virtual consoles (NOT X!!)

Wed Aug 22, 2018 4:09 pm

@ejolson: I have no idea what you are talking about, but it probably belongs in some other thread.

Meanwhile, ...

I had used the "Set resolution" functionality in "rc_gui" to make the X screen small, but this, alas, has the side effect of also making the VCs small. I have fixed this, for the time being, by putting the X screen back to the default size. Doing this makes the VCs regular sized (as a side effect).

But I'd still like to know the underlying answer to my original query. It should be possible to run with a small X screen size, but still have regular sized VCs. I think - but I'm not confident enough to test it out (am concerned about side effects) - that removing the comment hashes (#) from the above-quoted config.txt lines will do the trick. I'd like some commentary from someone knowledgeable (i.e., not just random forum participants) as to what effect doing so would have.
"L'enfer, c'est les autres"

G fytc hsqr rum umpbq rm qyw rm rfc kmbq md rfgq dmpsk:

Epmu Sn!

J lnacjrw njbruh-carppnanm vxm rb mnuncrwp vh yxbcb!

k-pi
Posts: 930
Joined: Sun Feb 12, 2017 1:46 pm
Location: Upper Hale, Surrey, UK.

Re: How to increase the size of the virtual consoles (NOT X!!)

Wed Aug 22, 2018 8:06 pm

(i.e., not just random forum participants)
# uncomment to force a console size.
Looks pretty clear to me - make a back up, (as you should have anyway), then uncomment with the required size.
Probably will need to reboot for it to take effect.

DirkS
Posts: 10214
Joined: Tue Jun 19, 2012 9:46 pm
Location: Essex, UK

Re: How to increase the size of the virtual consoles (NOT X!!)

Wed Aug 22, 2018 8:33 pm

n67 wrote:
Wed Aug 22, 2018 4:09 pm
But I'd still like to know the underlying answer to my original query. It should be possible to run with a small X screen size, but still have regular sized VCs. I think - but I'm not confident enough to test it out (am concerned about side effects)
Why? It's not going to blow up...
removing the comment hashes (#) from the above-quoted config.txt lines will do the trick.
That will change the resolution for any physical screen too
Use e.g.

Code: Select all

 cat /sys/class/graphics/fb0/virtual_size
to see the current size of the default framebuffer

From one random forum participant to another: start the vncserver daemon with the geometry parameter to just change the size of the virtual console.

Return to “Raspbian”