System76 Working with Canonical on Improving HiDPI Support in Ubuntu

Below is a guest post written by Ryan Sipes, Community Manager at System76


Last week System76 engineers participated in a call with Martin Wimpress of the Ubuntu Desktop team to discuss HiDPI support in Ubuntu, specifically Unity 7. HiDPI support exists in Unity 7, but there are areas that could use improvement, and the call focused around those. The conversation was primarily focused around bugs that still remain in the out-of-the-box HiDPI experience; specifically around enabling automatic scaling and Ubuntu recognizing when a HiDPI display is present so that it can adjust accordingly.

This has become a focus of System76 as it has worked to provide a good experience for users purchasing their new 4K HiDPI displays now available on the Oryx Pro and BonoboWS laptops.

“With our HiDPI laptops, everything is twice as crisp; it's like a high-quality printed magazine instead of a traditional computer display. The user interface is clearer, text is sharper, photos are more detailed, games are higher res, and videos can be viewed in full lifelike 4K. This is great whether you're anyone from a casual computer user to a video editor producing high end content or a professional developer who wants a better display for your code editor.”, says Cassidy James Blaede, a developer at System76 and a co-founder of elementary OS, an Ubuntu-based distribution that has put a lot of work into HiDPI support. Cassidy recently wrote a blog post explaining HiDPI, diving into the specifics of how it works.

Some patches that improve HiDPI support are in review and they are expected to land in Ubuntu soon. In order to accelerate this process HiDPI bugs in Launchpad are being tagged accordingly and will make it easier for contributors to focus their efforts more easily. System76 will be contributing heavily to this process, but many other Ubuntu community members have expressed interest in contributing as well, so this will likely be a hot spot in the near future.

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