LG monitors come with a software that allows splitting the plane into a number of virtual screens (alas, windows and mac only).

enter image description here

I like the idea to replace a multi-monitor setup with a big beefy one. What are the options to achieve the same result in Ubuntu (or Linux in general?).

I've seen a number of suggestions but they are tedious to use in practice (e.g. using gnome's shortcut to resize each window) and/or they have significant drawbacks (like i3).

5 Answers 5


In Ubuntu 16.04

You should be able do this with CCSM (CompizConfig-Settings-Manager) in Ubuntu 16.04. Ubuntu 18.04 will be using Gnome 3 Shell instead of Unity, Wayland instead of Xorg, and Mutter instead of Compiz, which don't have an easy way to achieve a lot of the nice efficiency tweaks that Compiz brings.

  1. Install CCSM: sudo apt install compizconfig-settings-manager compiz-plugins-extra
  2. Go to the General plugin
  3. Click the Display Settings tab.
  4. Un-check the Detect Outputs check-box.
  5. Change the setting in the Outputs box to be four different areas, with offsets, that add up to the area of your extreme HD monitor. For example, 1920x1080+1920+0 would mean that "display" is 1920 wide, 1080 tall, and placed 1920 pixels to the right from the left edge, and 0 pixels down from the top.

For a 4K monitor, if you want to make it behave like four 1080p monitors, you would set it up like the screen-shot below: (Good luck in finding "display" edges with the mouse pointer!)

This was never intended to be used this way, so if you hit maximize on your window, the menu bar will be in the upper left display. If you want to keep the menu bar for the program in the current display, use the Ctrl+Alt+KeypadNumber to place the window on an edge, in a corner, or fullscreen(keypad 5) on the current display. You might also want to disable the screen edge aero-snap like options of the Grid plugin for CCSM.

enter image description here

Below is a link to another post from me, explaining how to set up the CCSM Display Settings for multiple monitors. Maybe you can find some useful, related info there also.

Multi-Monitor Issues in Ubuntu

  • it is General Options not General Plugin
    – ColinWa
    Commented Apr 12, 2023 at 6:26

I looked up a lot for a simple solution that allows me to easily split my ultra-wide display as a grid, and after all I found two great solutions:

  1. PyGrid was the first one. A command-line solution for X11-based desktop with Python3 installed. It's pretty easy to setup and I strongly recommend.

  2. gTile, that is a Gnome extension, able to be configured just by UI. It's even easier to be configured and allows a lot more screen divisions and shortcuts. And it is my choice by now

  • 1
    Welcome to Ask Ubuntu! ;-) I recommend editing this answer to expand it with specific details about how and why to do this. See also How do I write a good answer? for general advice about what sorts of answers are considered most valuable on Ask Ubuntu, because as it stands, your answer is likely to be deleted because of low quality.
    – Fabby
    Commented Jul 18, 2019 at 8:52
  • 1
    I might be being stupid but what's wrong with this answer? pygrid looks like a lightweight tiling utility. It's not as thorough as some options (like switching to i3) but not not an answer.
    – Oli
    Commented Jul 19, 2019 at 8:54
  • 1
    Right, Fabby. I readed your link, but how should I improve the comment? I understand that the pygrid link is a lot enlightening and bring the same content to here wouldn't help so much. Anyway, thanks for the comment
    – artu-hnrq
    Commented Jul 19, 2019 at 18:18
  • 1
    This is a good plugin if you're running X11 but not running Compiz. However, I don't believe this answers the question. This looks like a windows placement program, and it doesn't let you set up each corner of your monitor to act like each corner is a separate individual monitor, which is what the original poster asked. Also, these features offered by pygrid are already included in Compiz, using the Compiz "Put" plugin. Put uses the exact same ctrl-alt-numpad keys.
    – SunnyDaze
    Commented Nov 9, 2019 at 22:36
  • 1
    I thought I wanted 2 virtual monitors, but what I really needed is this pygrid thing. Thanks! And while the "Put" plugin does the same, pygrid is more configurable and (for me) easy to understand.
    – Rub
    Commented Feb 14, 2021 at 21:23

In Ubuntu 18.04

Following https://superuser.com/questions/115076/how-to-vertically-split-widescreen-into-two-virtual-workspaces-on-ubuntu-gnome i used https://github.com/phillipberndt/fakexrandr and it worked flawlessly :)

  • doesnt work with tiling window managers though, you may say tiling manager does tiling itself, some tiling manager can even divide displays into virtual displays themselves though. But workaround is imo to configure a custom resolution for a display, perhaps any way, and a tiling manager can sort of still serve as a virtual displays divider.
    – FantomX1
    Commented Sep 13, 2021 at 16:57

As far as I know you can only split your screen for two windows at a time. Either one on the left and one on the right, Or one on the top and one the bottom. And there are shortcuts associated for these actions which are:

For vertical split:

Ctrl + Win +

For horizontal split:

Ctrl + Win +

I always prefer a dual monitor (of the same size and resolution) setup to an ultra-wide monitor.

I found this extension which does something similar to what you're asking for, It's for Cinnamon but maybe you can find something like it for Ubuntu

  • You can split windows all over the place. Hold Ctrl+Alt, and then select numbers on the numberpad, with 5 taking it full screen. Plus you can set it up in the CCSM "Grid" plugin to just drag windows to edges or corners for the same result.
    – SunnyDaze
    Commented Jan 31, 2018 at 0:03
  • @SunnyDaze Ctrl+Alt+Numpad doesn't seem to be available for CInnamon (what I'm using) oh well :/ - thanks for sharing info
    – Shayan
    Commented Feb 18, 2018 at 15:29
  • i agree, ultra-wide monitors are really useless. Commented Aug 11, 2019 at 12:58

You can manage "virtual desktops" with Super + "S", and then organize your workload accordingly by dragging open programs to the "virtual desktop" you want them to appear on. For example, I have my e-mail on one virtual desktop, my browsers on another, my file manager on another and whatever I am working on shown on my fourth virtual desktop... Yeah it's not exactly the same as what you are proposing - but unless you have a pretty big display, I do wonder just how useful having two or more "displays" on-screen at once is going to be (plus, this is a work-around that is guaranteed to work "out-of-the-box").

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