24 June 2014

583. Very, very briefly: using a USB graphics card with a headless box

This is an 'It Works' post. No tips or tricks, simply a report of something that works out of the box.

I've got a tiny server which has the following ports:
2 x USB type A, 4 x RJ45/8P8C (eth), 1x DE-9 (RS-232). There's no VGA out.

While this isn't a real problem -- I normally install linux on it either via a chroot or via a virtual machine by hooking up the HDD via a HDD-> USB cable to another computer -- it would be nice to be able to hook up a monitor to the server, in particular as I'm thinking about turning it into a lab computer to use for measurements. That it's so portable (21 x 15 x 4 cm) is an added bonus as it allows us to move it between labs.

Anyway, I bought an FY-1650  USB-to-VGA card (see e.g. here and here) for ca AUD 37 on ebay:

lsusb gives 
Bus 001 Device 003: ID 17e9:019e DisplayLink

I currently run debian wheezy (i386) on the server. Plugging in the card and a monitor and booting up everything worked without needing to do anything.

NOTE: by working I mean that I get the terminal -- I haven't tried this with a full desktop environment such as gnome, xfce etc.

Very happy...

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