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This is certainly a newbie question but I could not find the answer by searching.

I am using Mathematica 8 under Windows 7. I want to use default magnification of 150% for all notebooks and help files which I open in Mathematica. At present I have to do it through Windows->Magnification for every single document I open which is of course tedious. I assume there is a way of setting some options which is saved across different sessions as well.

Would appreciate any help.

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3 Answers

up vote 10 down vote accepted

If the reason you ask is because the fonts are much too small, then there is another approach that is arguably more correct than changing Magnification, and that is to specify a better screen resolution. By default it is 72ppi, but screens haven't been like that for years (mine is about 100ppi).

SetOptions[$FrontEndSession, 
 FontProperties -> {"ScreenResolution" -> 96}
]

If you like the setting and what to make it persist between sessions, replace $FrontEndSession with $FrontEnd.

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You can also set this to Automatic, or alternatively set it from the options inspector. I'd love to know what it actually does, though... I set mine to 72 and to 135 to see the difference, and nothing seemed to happen. –  acl Feb 4 '12 at 21:10
1  
@acl on Windows 7 it makes a huge difference; the fonts scale proportionately. It would be worth a new question why this doesn't work on your system. –  Mr.Wizard Feb 4 '12 at 21:20
    
I am not sure it doesn't: Heike pointed this out some time ago (in some other answer), and I recall it did make a difference. I'll try to work out what is going on. –  acl Feb 4 '12 at 21:30
    
@acl perhaps my SetOptions form is not system-independent? –  Mr.Wizard Feb 5 '12 at 0:31
    
It appears to be: it sets the same thing as the options inspector. I am trying to work out what is going on (have been working until now and did not get a chance to). –  acl Feb 5 '12 at 0:48
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Here are step by step instructions:

  1. Open the menu item Format -> Options Inspector...

  2. Set "Show option values" to "Global Preferences"

  3. Find Notebook Options -> Display Options

  4. Set Magnification to 1.5

Now all your notebooks will show at 150% magnification.

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Many thanks, works like a charm. –  Mikael Anderson Feb 4 '12 at 18:03
    
@Szabolcs When I do the above procedure, it affects magnification on all existing notebooks, but new notebooks still open at 100%, not at 1.25 (which is what I set this option to). Am I missing something? –  rogerl Jul 3 '12 at 13:44
    
@rogerl Does it show 100% in the status bar or is it actually 100%? It seems it does show 100%, but the base magnification is actually higher, even in newly opened notebooks. (As you can see from the text size.) –  Szabolcs Jul 3 '12 at 14:26
    
@Szabolcs Yeah, the base magnification is higher. A little odd and confusing. Thanks. –  rogerl Jul 12 '12 at 12:26
    
Note: If your Notebook (or maybe cell, graphics, plot) defines ScreenResolution, this will override the Global Preference, so you will see no effect. See my answer. –  NoEscape Oct 18 '12 at 6:17
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The better option may be setting "ScreenResolution" on a per notebook basis. This way you do not change the appearance of the palettes, help browser, etc.

Try

SetOptions[SelectedNotebook[], 
 FontProperties -> {"ScreenResolution" -> Automatic}
]

instead of Automatic you can put in a number. Try moving from 72 upward. 96 is a good value for todays systems/screens. Automatic results in 96 on my system. If the Times font is still too small for you, try 108 or more.

Of course you can set the corresponding value via the Option Inspector (Formatting Options - Font Options - FontProperties - ScreenResolution). Just remember choosing "Selected Notebook" in the first listbox.

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Note: Magnification can be safely set on a global base. See Szabolcs' post. If you want to enlarge ALL Palettes and the Help Browser, set global Magnification first, then adjust your ScreenResolution per notebook! –  NoEscape Oct 17 '12 at 13:32
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