I tried to use xrandr to set 1680x1050 as a new mode to VGA output, but it says:

sudo xrandr --addmode VGA-0 1680
X Error of failed request:  BadMatch (invalid parameter attributes)
Major opcode of failed request:  140 (RANDR)
Minor opcode of failed request:  18 (RRAddOutputMode)
Serial number of failed request:  35
Current serial number in output stream:  36

First generate a "modeline" by using cvt
Syntax is: cvt width height refreshrate

cvt 1680 1050 60

this gives you:

# 1680x1050 59.95 Hz (CVT 1.76MA) hsync: 65.29 kHz; pclk: 146.25 MHz
Modeline "1680x1050_60.00"  146.25  1680 1784 1960 2240  1050 1053 1059 1089 -hsync +vsync

Now tell this to xrandr:

xrandr --newmode "1680x1050_60.00"  146.25  1680 1784 1960 2240  1050 1053 1059 1089 -hsync +vsync

Then you can now add it to the table of possible resolutions of an output of your choice:

xrandr --addmode VGA-0 1680x1050_60.00

The changes are lost after reboot, to set up the resolution persistently, create the file ~/.xprofile with the content:

xrandr --newmode "1680x1050_60.00"  146.25  1680 1784 1960 2240  1050 1053 1059 1089 -hsync +vsync
xrandr --addmode VGA-0 1680x1050_60.00
  • 26
    The connected device might not be VGA-0. If you get the message xrandr: cannot find output "VGA-0", try running the following command: xrandr | grep -e " connected [^(]" | sed -e "s/\([A-Z0-9]\+\) connected.*/\1/" (source: xrandr on ArchWiki). The output of that command should be the correct device identifier. – thirdender Jul 9 '14 at 6:25
  • 13
    You do not need sudo with xrandr – Panther Oct 12 '15 at 18:14
  • 3
    I would like to add that I have the same error - and the above does not solve the problem at all – TellMeWhy Oct 13 '15 at 9:35
  • 5
    If you're on a VM, the display is usually Virtual1 instead of VGA-0. – CyberEd Mar 22 '16 at 22:37
  • 8
    You need to replace VGA-0 with your monitor connection. Use xrandr --listmonitors. See How to fix error 'xrandr: cannot find output “VGA1”'? – Human Mar 7 '18 at 5:27

How to set a custom resolution previously specified. After executing the other steps defined to create the resolution, run:

xrandr -s 1680x1050

How to set a custom resolution previously specified when running multiple monitors. After executing the other steps defined to create the resolution, run:

xrandr --output DVI-0 --mode 1680x1050

Replace DVI-0 with your device-id, e.g. VGA-0


Thanks to thom and thirdender this is basically a single command configuration based on the most voted answer.

RES="1920 1200 60" && \
DISP=$(xrandr | grep -e " connected [^(]" | sed -e "s/\([A-Z0-9]\+\) connected.*/\1/") && \
MODELINE=$(cvt $(echo $RES) | grep -e "Modeline [^(]" | sed -r 's/.*Modeline (.*)/\1/') && \
MODERES=$(echo $MODELINE | grep -o -P '(?<=").*(?=")') && \
cat > ~/.xprofile << _EOF
xrandr --newmode $MODELINE
xrandr --addmode $DISP $MODERES

The above command will generate the desired ~/.xprofile file. Just make sure you use the resolution (i.e. the RES variable) of your liking. More info here.

You could replace

xrandr | grep -e " connected [^(]" | sed -e "s/\([A-Z0-9]\+\) connected.*/\1/"


xrandr | grep -e " connected [^(]" | cut -d\  -f1

in $DISP variable if that does not work for you.

  • Thanx for this one. It did the job for me. But to make it work, the user should run "cvt 1920 1200 60" command first. Because resolution isn't exist yet. – deeptionary yesterday

Definitely you have to take a look at autorandr, there seems to be no easier way.

This is the man page (from Ubuntu): http://manpages.ubuntu.com/manpages/bionic/man1/autorandr.1.html

And this is the source code: https://github.com/phillipberndt/autorandr

Install it in Ubuntu with:

sudo apt install autorandr

Then just save your current config with:

autorandr -s myFaveConfig

and change config and save others with

autorandr -s myOtherConfig

Then just apply them whenever you want with:

autorandr [theConfigIwant]

for example:

autorandr myFaveConfig

will load the first config you saved in this example.

Nothing easier !!

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