Linked by Thom Holwerda on Thu 13th Oct 2005 16:03 UTC, submitted by DigitalDame
Windows "When Windows first shipped, 20 years ago this month, it was considered nothing more than a slow operating environment that had arrived late to the party, well behind the industry leaders, Apple and Xerox PARC. Now, it's the operating system used on nearly 95 percent of all the desktops and notebooks sold worldwide. Take a look at Window's past and present, and what lies ahead in the future, including an interview with Mr. Bill Gates himself."
Thread beginning with comment 45168
To view parent comment, click here.
To read all comments associated with this story, please click here.
Member since:


Well, you're obviously doing something wrong. I just changed the dpi setting on that XP machine from 96 to 120, and everything is working correctly, all fonts are properly scaled, etc.

Actually not everything is correct. You don't notice that so clearly while using cleartype fonts, but without smoothing you should see the difference - left window (appearance) uses Arial (or rather MS Sans Serif) font, the right one (effects) uses Tahoma (what is correct).

This of course is "leftovers" from Windows 20 year history:) For many versions of their OS they used MS Sans Serif as default desktop and window font, very big amount of visual elements had this font hardcoded (has someone attempted to change W95 fonts in consistent manner? I remember that this was achievable only by *renaming* some font files...). Apparently XP includes some very old dialogs (like display properties); in normal circumstanses almost noone notices difference.

And using MS Sans Serif can explain bad scalabilty too - it is pixel (fixed) font, not truetype.

But - who cares? So far as product sells, such little inconsistencies do not matter at all. Had they more competition (at least for many years ago), probably their OS/desktop appearance would be much more polished.

Reply Parent Score: 1

dylansmrjones Member since:

Are you sure it's Arial or MS Sans Serif?
Not that I can tell the difference without further testing
. They look very similar especially in small fontsizes (and 8 point non-scaled is very small on a 17" CRT-monitor running 1600*1200 ;)

I just don't understand why it doesn't work properly in the range [97;119] DPI when it works with 96 and 120 DPI. It's not that difficult.

Could it be that the dialogues fall back on MS Sans Serif with DPI settings in the range [97;119] DPI? Because that would explain it, because your right about the MS Sans Serif (which shouldn't be confused with Microsoft Sans Serif. The latter is a true type font, while the first is an old bitmap font from way back, probably from Windows 3.0).

I definitely care about this. It's an important issue for me, because I'm using a rather high resolution. 1600*1200 on a 17" CRT-monitor does require proper scaling ;)

Besides that, it's a bug which one can fix easily (if one has access to the source, that is), and it's been around long enough to be fixed several times, except that it hasn't. It's actually embarrasing - in my mind.

Reply Parent Score: 1