When I first used my Raspberry Pi, I wondered why the full 1920×1080 resolution of my monitor was not taken advantage of. In the preferences of the Pi, the resolution was set to the largest available (not 1080p), but after some research I found you can change a few settings in a configuration file that will remove the black bars (‘overscan’) and enjoy your Raspberry Pi fullscreen.
To change the settings, we need to change a few things in /boot/config.txt. From the Linux command line interface (without going into the GUI desktop), enter:
sudo nano /boot/config.txt
This will bring up the contents of the config.txt file, where you are free to edit it. As the instructions say, find the line which says #disable_overscan=1 and uncomment it (i.e. remove the #). Normally this should be enough, but if you used NOOBS (New Out Of Box Software) then there are a few more things you need to change.
As you look down the page, there may be another section with overscan and borders, and yet another disable_overscan=0. All of these override our disable_overscan=1 above. Therefore, you’ll need to comment (i.e. add a # before each line) that mentions overscan (there are four), and lastly change disable_overscan=0 at the bottom to disable_overscan=1. Additionally ensure that this final line isn’t commented out. Here is that last block of code as it should look after our changes (note your overscan number values may be different):
Saving the changes
Once we’re done, press ^X (or Ctrl+X) and follow the instructions on screen (i.e. typing Y to save) to save your changes. You may need to reboot your Pi for the changes to take effect. If you have any troubles or can’t get this to work, leave a comment below.
Found this tip useful? Take a look at how to format a 64 gigabyte SD card for your Raspberry Pi.