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Windows Aero disabled after connecting third monitor

post #1 of 9
Thread Starter 
Hey everybody,

I just picked up a replacement screen for my third monitor and it has forceably disabled Windows Aero.

Originally I had the following setup connected to my Gigabyte GTX980;

Dell U2410 (1920x1200 60Hz) - Asus ROG Swift (2560x1440 144Hz) - Dell U2410 (1920x1200 60Hz)

I've replaced one of the Dell screens so I've now got;


Dell U2410 (1920x1200 60Hz) - Asus ROG Swift (2560x1440 144Hz) - Philips BDM4065UC 40" 4K (3840x2160 60Hz)

All three are connected via DisplayPort.

Without resorting to Registry hacks, has anyone got any ideas?

Currently running 347.09

On desktop, the card is running at

910.9MHz Base core
1752.8 Mem clock

Any assistance would be much appreciated.
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post #2 of 9
Just click one of the premade "aero themes" to try and get it back.

My aero disabled on my surround monitor setup and that is the only way I got it back.
post #3 of 9
Thread Starter 
Unfortunately I've tried that already without success.

I'm half-tempted to reinstall Windows 7 (Possibly moving to 8.1), as this installation is getting quite long in the tooth.

At the same time, having aero enabled shouldn't really be such a difficult thing to have working - even with it trying to render so many desktop pixels...

There are registry tweaks that work, however, I'm not terribly keen on mucking around with that as an ongoing fix.
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post #4 of 9
First, try bumping the resolution from your 4k monitor down to around 2560x1440p and renabling aero(restart or run the commands I posted below).


Second.. It's Funny.. I actually just got off the phone with tier 2 support from nvidia this morning regarding this issue. First some info

My setup:

- Custom rig running a gtx 670 4GB
- 1 x LG 34um95-p @ 3440x1440p via display port
- 2 x Dell u2711's @ 2560x1440p via dual link dvi's (verified from evga that card supports 2 DL connections)
- 1 x 55" changhong @ 1920x1080 via hdmi

Problem

Connecting all 4 monitors and running the LG @ 3440x1440p causes aero to crash and defaults to windows default/classic theme. Also causes operating system to sort of "lag" when dragging windows and there is video tearing everywhere including:

- web content (chrome, ie, mozilla, opera)
- media players (vlc, wmp, mp-hc, quicktime, etc)
- there is a mode that mp-hc can play video without tearing but required me to install madVR and be in full screen mode.

However I have noticed its causing all kinds of issues in other areas(almost as if windows itself is unable to utilize the gpu in this specific resolution. Even running an aero utility from Microsoft located here:

http://support2.microsoft.com/mats/aero_effects_not_working/en-us



If I run the tool with all of my displays at their native resolution I get a result that tells me "you do not have an aero capable card". If I bump the LG's native res from 3440x1440p down to 2560x1440(to match the 2 dell displays) Aero can be re-enabled via the cmd with a simple command:

net stop uxsms
net start uxsms command

Trying to run the above command with all the monitors at their native resolutions results in screen flickering, aero trying to start, but ultimately defaulting back to the classic/default theme. I also tried installing a fresh copy of windows onto a spare disk I had lying around. Performed exactly the same way.

At this resolution, the system functions properly:
- 1 x LG 34um95-p @ 2560x1440p via display port cable
- 2 x Dell u2711's @ 2560x1440p via 2 dual link dvi cables
- 1 x 55" changhong @ 1920x1080 via hdmi cable

At this resolution, it does not:
- 1 x LG 34um95-p @ 3440x1440p via display port cable
- 2 x Dell u2711's @ 2560x1440p via 2 dual link dvi cables
- 1 x 55" changhong @ 1920x1080 via hdmi cable

This issue seemed new to the gentleman I spoke with who for the most part, seemed concerned and engaged in trying to help me find a solution. A ticket has been opened and he said he would investigate the issue and get back to me shortly.


Now, where does the fault lie? Given that this same behavior is exhibited with a fresh install of windows 7, I am leaning towards this being a bug in the nvidia driver. Curious what you guys think.
Edited by leomedia - 1/12/15 at 4:26pm
post #5 of 9
Thread Starter 
Thanks for the insight there, Leo.

You mention screen tearing in video playback, which I also noticed when I was trying to watch some content on my shiny new monitor and hadn't yet attributed to these issues. It also seems to have a bit of trouble dragging windows when they're fullscreen. It seemed okay trying to drag a window that wasn't maximised though, it was working okay when moving a half-sized instance of Firefox at least.

It is a fairly unusual use case, so it's no wonder it's a bit of unexplored territory. Perhaps it's handled more gracefully in newer versions of Windows, not that I'm terribly keen to upgrade to W8.1 at this particular time (what with W10 releasing in coming months, supposedly)
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post #6 of 9
^ same here with window dragging(and many other os tasks). I haven't done a huge amount of testing but overall I would say that what ever is causing this issue, is also causing the applications that utilize GPU acceleration(premiere pro, after effects, cinema 4d, photoshop) to handicap their performance.

Quite a big problem for me as use my computer mainly for work. Being that I consulted with nvidia(and got their approval before proceeding) regarding this specific monitor configuration, I'm hoping nvidia gets this bug sorted quickly. I narrowed it down to the specific resolution regardless of connection, so it shouldn't be too hard to track from there. Seeing that you are having a "similar" problem even with a 980 tells me it shouldn't be too hard for them to track down.
post #7 of 9
Nvidia replied and seems to have found the underlying issue. A shortcoming of windows 7, read below:

Nvidia Rep,

My investigation reveals that the Aero issue is NOT a driver bug. Its a limitation of the Win7 OS architecture per MS KB article. http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2724530

This problem occurs when the Windows Desktop Window Manager attempts to display a desktop that is larger than 8192 pixels high or 8192 pixels wide. This exceeds the maximum allowable size for a DirectX 10 texture. (In Windows 7, the Desktop Window Manager utilizes DirectX 10.)

Lowering the LG desktop resolution to 2560x1440 works around the limitation but may not be optimal resolution or clarity wise.

Likely the video playback anomalies that occur during video playback is caused by the same OS limitation.

I asked how he come about this information(for personal future reference. They replied with:

Nvidia rep,

Good question. Our engineering team actually received reports of this kind of issues from users awhile back which prompted the investigation. We'll probably get more reports of this as the popularity of high resolution monitors/TVs increase. Since MS is our tech partner, we informed them of the issue and they had to made changes to their API to properly address the limitation of DX10. So moving forward, Windows 8.1 and 10 should not have this issue as the Desktop Window Manager(DWM) uses DirectX 11 API which has a max surface resolution of 16k. Unfortunately problem will not go away even if you apply the latest DX update for Win7 since the DWM on Win7 was built with DX10 and Microsoft will not be updating it(their focus is on newer DX and OS).

In the future if you see any issue that you suspect its a bug, please don't hesitate to "submit a bug" at the site below. This will get to our eng. improve our software, and we do monitor it regularly even if you don't get a response.
http://nvidia-submit.custhelp.com/app/utils/login_form/redirect/ask


Looks like I will be waiting until windows 10 is released frown.gif Really sad windows has chosen to limit the DWM to dx10
post #8 of 9
Hi @all,

I have the same problem, unfortunately. Triple 4K monitors. Hardware acceleration seems to be completely deactivated, not to mention Aero is missing.

Is there a workaround available already? (other than rearranging the monitors)

Thanks heaps in advance,

David.P
--
PS: there is actually a workaround, sort of:
Quote:
Force Enable Aero in Windows 7
1. Click on Start and type regedit at run

2. Now Navigate to the following registry key:
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\DWM

3. In the right details pane, create following Three DWORD (32-bit value) entry
UseMachineCheck, and set its value to 0.
Blur, and set its value to 0.
Animations, and set its value to 0.

4. Close Regedit

5. Click on Start and type CMD with administrative Priviliges

6. Now type following command
Net Stop uxsms
Net Start uxsms
Above command will stop and start Desktop Window Manager Session Manager.

7. Now you can turn on Aero by right clicking on desktop-> Personalize -> Select Windows Colors

However, this prevents the desktop from working. It is simply black with nothing on it and no wallpaper possible.
Edited by DavidP - 6/1/16 at 1:08pm
post #9 of 9
OK I made this little batchfile below that restarts the DWM on boot if a link to the batchfile is put in the Windows startup folder, thus enabling Aqua and full hardware acceleration on my triple 4K 11.520x2160 pixels Win7 desktop.

The script needs nircmd.exe placed in the Windows directory in order to be able to minimize all windows before restarting the DWM, to prevent flickering and strange graphics effects during its execution.

Note: if using this solution, do not use Win+D or the respective button on the Taskbar, if any, in order to show the desktop, because this will kill the DWM and cause a fallback to classic design without hardware acceleration.

Only drawback is, you can't have a wallpaper obviously, and also files on the desktop will be invisible.

Hth and cheers
David
Code:
nircmd sendkeypress lwin+"m"
TIMEOUT 2
Net Stop uxsms
TIMEOUT 5
Net Start uxsms
TIMEOUT 10
exit
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