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Fix Zoomed in / Large Text in Firefox New Versions

If you use Firefox on Windows, you may have noticed a subtle change in the way the browser has been rendering webpages since updating to one of the 10X versions. Myself I only noticed this after I updated from v99 to v107 recently.

The change I am referring to is that webpages seems zoomed in (i.e. it appears as if the zoom level percentage has been slightly increased). This makes the text on sites appears unusually larger compared to previous versions.

Consequently, like me, you may have resorted to zooming out some sites (i.e. decreasing the zoom level) in order to restore the previous look. This is however not ideal as it requires one to adjust the zoom level for any new site visited. This is what I was doing until I realized it wasn’t practical, and I had to find a permanent solution.

So I did some research and managed to track down the exact source of this change: starting with v103.0, Firefox began observing the Make text bigger system font size setting that’s found in Settings > Ease of Access > Display. This change is mentioned in the release notes for this version.

Screenshot of the make text bigger option in the Ease of access settings.
Make text bigger in Ease of Access’s Display settings

On my computer this font size was set to about 110% which explained the mystery behind the larger text in Firefox. Sure enough, pushing the font size slider back to 100% restored the zoom level in Firefox as I was used to.

The downside however is that the system font size had become smaller. Nevertheless, there’s a way of telling Firefox not to observe this setting — this way you can have a larger system font size that doesn’t also apply to Firefox’s UI and web pages.

To set this:

  1. Go to about:config in the Firefox address bar, then search for the option ui.textScaleFactor.
  2. If it doesn’t exist, create it first and set it to a Number type.
  3. Next, give it a value of 100 and save it.
    Screenshot of the text scale factor setting witha  a value of 100.

The change in the font size will take place immediately.

If you want to go a step further, you can also try using custom zoom values in Firefox (e.g. 97% or 107%) which are usually not possible by default since Firefox only offers a couple of preset zoom levels.

These values can apply to the entire browser, web pages or just the text, thus giving you the opportunity to control how exactly the browser renders sites.

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Kelvin Kathia

Kelvin Kathia is a writer based in Kenya that's passionate about sharing solutions to everyday tech problems. He's the founder and editor of Journey Bytes, a tech blog and web design agency. Feel free to leave him comments or questions regarding this post, or by leaving him a message on the contact page. If you found his content helpful, a donation is much appreciated.