Dual Monitors Background Question

Discussion in 'macOS' started by spaceballl, Dec 7, 2007.

  1. spaceballl macrumors 68030


    Nov 2, 2003
    San Francisco, CA
    Hi there,

    I have a folder full of desktop pictures and I like to have OS X change the picture at random every 15 minutes. I recently upgraded to dual monitors :)D), and I'm wondering if it is possible to have the backgrounds in sync at all. Like, can I have a background span the two monitors? I don't think I can. Or, is it possible to at least have them display the same picture?

    Right now I might have an ocean on one screen and a picture of new york city on the other... I'd like it if they could be the same. Like both of them having the same picture, and then in 15 minutes, changing again.
  2. triddent222 macrumors regular

    Jul 27, 2007
    Somewhere interesting
    Go to System Preferences > Desktop & Screen Saver. Now, if you are using spanning as your Dual-monitor setup, you should get two (2) different, and separate Desktop & Screen Saver windows (one on each monitor). Simply add a new folder to the Source list (you might have to add the folder on both windows). Click on it, select the first picture, then on the bottom check Change Picture every and choose whatever time fits your needs. Then repeat on the second monitor. Voila.

    EDIT: I don't think you can span the same picture across both monitors.
  3. trainguy77 macrumors 68040

    Nov 13, 2003
    to span two picture just split it into two image files.
  4. spaceballl thread starter macrumors 68030


    Nov 2, 2003
    San Francisco, CA
    No that doesn't work. As soon as you tell it to change the picture every 15 minutes, the pictures no longer are in sync and each monitor runs through the list on its own
  5. kostia macrumors regular

    Apr 14, 2007
    What if you had two folders of images, one with images for monitor 1 and one with images for monitor 2, and you told the preference pane to rotate through folder 1 on monitor 1 and folder 2 for monitor 2?

    I'm not willing to try this right now but it seems like it would work. Or does it go through the folder randomly?
  6. trainguy77 macrumors 68040

    Nov 13, 2003
    Well what you could do is either make a automator action or a applescript that does this. I am thinking an applescript may be your best option.
  7. Foxguitarist macrumors newbie

    Jan 6, 2008
    This works for me

    This is how i do it...

    1. Create two folders
    (i named them "LEFT" & "RIGHT")

    2. Dump your photos in them respectively but re-title them into a numerical order
    (So in my set up i have two 22 inch monitors each running 1680x1050... i took my photo, some random landscape, dumped it into photoshop cranked it to 3360x1050. depending on the quality of photo and what settings you do it may or may not come out to pretty. then i cropped it down to 1680x1050 for the left and right side. essentially chopping the photo in half... then throw the "left" photo into the left folder and title it 001, do the same to the "right" photo by putting it into the right folder and titling it 001. Do this to all your photos)

    3. Now set up the preferences to where the left monitor is running off of the left folder and the right monitor is running off the right folder, select the first photo in each and set the duration to what you want, (i did 5 seconds), do not select random order.

    4. At this point odds are the timing wont be exact so to fix all that just log out and log back in and both monitors should start on 001 in each folder and change at the same time to 002.

    I have noticed that the main screen seems to change just a little earlier than the other one... for whatever reason but it's not to noticeable.

    Hope this works for those concerned... so far i've logged in and out tons of times and it is always in order, if you have any questions feel free to email.
  8. Bassdust macrumors newbie

    Mar 21, 2008
    What Foxguitarist does works well, have been doing it for a while.

    Sometimes though, through bad luck, the desktops can desync. happened once when i logged out just when it was switching.

    If this happens try as i might i couldn't get them to together again by playing in the Preference Pane.

    In the end i deleted both of the desktop .plist files in my user library, then redid the setup in the desktop pref pane.

    Worked fine again.

    I use Mandolux's desktops, very nice photography. Hundreds of colourful, interesting images.


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