If you don't see much on the Mac screen and the font and symbols seem too small to you, then you can adjust both using different procedures. The individual measures can also be used to make symbols and fonts smaller in macOS. In this manual you will find tips and tricks for enlarging / reducing the elements in Finder, Mail, web browser and generally for displaying all content.
Tip for keyboard shortcuts: How to find it on the Mac keyboard!
Chapter in this post:
- 1 Change the symbol and font size in macOS
- 2 Change the font and icons for Finder & Desktop
- 3 Adjust the size of the directory overview in the Finder
- 4 Set the font larger or smaller in the mail app
- 5 “Fonts” menu as an alternative
- 6 Customize the web page display in the browser
- 7 Zoom in / out of the pointer
- 8 More guides from Apple
- 9 Similar posts
Change symbol and font size in macOS
In the following, I will show you options for adjusting the symbol sizes and font sizes and positions on the Mac. There is not really a comprehensive guide with which you can enlarge or reduce the elements equally everywhere. But you can regulate the resolution of the display / the connected monitors down so that everything is shown larger overall - or you screw it up so that everything becomes smaller. But now to the individual solutions:
Change font and icons for Finder & Desktop
In the Finder, the systemBrowser under Mac OS X and macOS, you will find directories, folders and files. If these are displayed too large or too small, you can make adjustments in the "Display options". There are three different ways to access this:
- Menu bar -> Display -> Show display options
- Right click in Finder-Window -> Show display options
- Keyboard shortcut: ⌘J
If you choose one of these three ways, a window will be displayed in which you will find controls for the symbol size and for the grid spacing (distance between the symbols). In addition, the text size can be adjusted in the Finder (and thus on the desk) - from 10 points to 16 points. The standard is 12 points. Further options are the position of the symbol designations (bottom or right), the display of object information, the symbol preview and the type of sorting.
Adjust the size of the directory overview in the Finder
In the left column of the Finder you can call up different directories. You can adjust the folders and files displayed as well as their names using the procedure described above. But there are also customization options for the list of storage locations. To do this, you call up the system settings via the apple icon, the launchpad or the dock. There you then select "General" and can choose between small, medium and large in the "Size of the sidebar icons" roll menu.
Set the font larger or smaller in the mail app
The operating system for Apple computers comes with its own mail app for managing your mailboxes and emails. If the display of the electronic mail in it seems too small or too large to you, then simply adjust it. With the mail app open, click on "Appearance" in the menu bar and then on "Customize toolbar ...". Then you drag the larger / smaller button in the toolbar and you can then quickly and easily make adjustments:
In addition to the toolbar buttons, which you can use to quickly and easily customize the entire display of emails, you can also assign individually selected font sizes to individual fonts and styles in the Mail app. To do this, open the application and click on "Format" in the menu bar and then on "Show fonts". Alternatively, you can use the key combination ⌘T. This window appears for adjustments:
Customize the webpage display in the browser
In Safari as well as in Chrome, Firefox, Opera and other web browsers for surfing the Internet, you can change the size of the displayed pages with short key combinations. Here are the three key combinations that you should remember in order to display Internet pages with small fonts larger and large-format pages smaller:
- Enlarging / zooming in on the page: ⌘ +
- Reduce / zoom out page: ⌘ +
- Display original page / normalize: ⌘0
Zoom in / out of the pointer
The problem is not always the font and the symbols of directories, folders and files, but also the mouse pointer. If the resolution is very high or the setting is simply quite small, you can also make adjustments here. To do this, go to the system settings again (via the apple icon, Launchpad or Dock) and click on "Accessibility". Select "Display" in the left menu and adjust the cursor size as you wish. In addition to the cursor size, you will also find other display settings that could make it easier for you to recognize the screen content:
More instructions from Apple
Do you want to personalize the desk in macOS Sierra and macOS High Sierra, reduce or enlarge the text, adjust symbols and objects and use the screen zoom? Then there is on this Apple support page even more instructions and tips that you can use. Do you have any questions or tips and hints for the display adjustments on the Mac, iMac and MacBook from Apple? Then please leave a comment on the topic!
After graduating from high school, Johannes completed an apprenticeship as a business assistant specializing in foreign languages. But then he decided to research and write, which resulted in his independence. For several years he has been working for Sir Apfelot, among others. His articles include product introductions, news, manuals, video games, consoles, and more. He follows Apple keynotes live via stream.