This article explains one simple fix to all your text appearing wonky, with jagged and somehow oddly fuzzy edges in Windows. The guide is written for Windows 10 (because that’s the only modern OS that natively supports taskbar being docked on the side of the screen), but it probably applies for Windows 11 as well.
Table of Contents
As we all know, it’s not your computer. You might pay for the hardware, and might even have a subscription to an operating system license, but in reality, Microsoft owns it, and they’ll do whatever they want with it.
And this time, they wanted to mess with my text for some reason. Not to get too far ahead of our skis here, but I actually never found out WHY the fonts got all messed up (so the best I can guess is someone at Microsoft had a bad day)… But I did figure out HOW.
But first – what actually happened?
The problem was that all of my text looked ugly, like it was missing a few pixels here and there, and then some others were melting together – and perhaps there was even an extra quarterpixel thrown in here and there to make some lines seem extra jarring.
What do I mean, you ask? Well, take a look below:
Ugh. Makes even reading about a fascinating topic (such as the taxation of fringe benefits) painful. And it happens in all apps.
If you’re still with me here, chances are Windows has somehow disabled ClearType for displaying text.
Now, if you’re like me, you might ask “what the heck is ClearType”. But that is the wrong question (you can read all about it here though) – the right question is “how do I make sure ClearType is turned on?” as there’s pretty much no reason you should have it off on a normal modern pc.
It’s very much like Microsoft to offer that option, though, and it’s also very much like Microsoft to occasionally flip a switch like that – just to make sure we’re actually still awake!
The solution is not that complicated – you just need to know what to look for!
Time needed: 5 minutes
How to enable “ClearType” to fix fuzzy fonts on Windows?
- Open the Start menu
The one with the, you know, “Windows” logo on it. Or just hit the Windows -key.
- Search for “ClearType” and select “Adjust ClearType text”
You should find something like this in the Start menu:
- Turn on ClearType
Maybe this one should be pretty self-explanatory… But in case your computer is suffering from the same sudden jaggedness as mine, chance are the checkbox here is missing a little tick. Go ahead and click it.
- Go through the configuration steps
Now you have a few leisurely steps to go through. Essentially, just pick the text that looks the most legible to you. Chances are any of them are going to be an improvement over what you had before enabling ClearType, but these steps are still important to get the sharpness exactly right.
And you should be good!
Did it help you? Let me know in the comments -section below!
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