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Menubar fonts unreadably small in Linux?

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Alasdair McAndrew
Alasdair McAndrew on 16 Oct 2016
Commented: Daniel on 17 Jan 2024
This is a question which has been asked before, but to which I haven't been able to find a satisfactory response. I'm using Matlab R2016b on Linux, with a HiDPI screen (2560x1440) on a laptop - so a lot of pixels squeezed into a small space. And the standard menu fonts are tiny - so tiny that I have to squint carefully to read them.
I understand this to be in some way related to the Java system that Matlab uses for its GUI, but I have no idea how to increase the size of the menubar/toolbar fonts and icons. It's not included in Matlab's preferences; from my reading I believe that these are picked up somehow from the underlying OS. Or more accurately, from the underlying Java engine.
Currently, if I want to use Matlab with readable menus, I have to change my desktop resolution to a lower one, which of course affects every other application. So I'm hoping there's a better way?

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Answers (1)

Prasad Mendu
Prasad Mendu on 19 Oct 2016
Edited: Prasad Mendu on 19 Oct 2016
Unfortunately the Linux version of MATLAB does not support high DPI screens on Linux yet. Refer this documentation page for more information
The possible workarounds mentioned below may help improve the visual appearance:
(a) You can increase font sizes of text in the different windows. However, the icon or font size of the toolbar cannot be changed.
(b) You can switch the high DPI monitor to a lower screen resolutions of 1920x1080 or as preferred. Follow the steps below to change the screen resolution:
1. Go to the OS Display control setting window
2. Click on the "Display" tab. A slider menu with the title "Scale for menu and title bars:" should be set to either 0.5 or 1. Click Apply.
3. Click on the "Reduce Resolution" tab and set it to 1920 x 1080 (16:9). Click Apply.
(c) You can connect a lower resolution monitor.
bas jacobs
bas jacobs on 23 Jan 2023
Exactly, and not on IDE's which they make available for free. Yet they manage to do a decent job at it, including the part where high DPI displays are involved, even in the niches of the Linux ecosystem. In shrill contrast, the Mathworks has Matlab as one of their main products which they charge a lot of money for, and they don't even manage to get High DPI display support right for a single dominant Linux distribution.
Bottom line, Mathworks, please, fix the problem. Thank you.
Daniel on 17 Jan 2024
Lame Mathworks. 2024a betas till unable to display a readable help window, way too small Ctrl + + doesn't work on Fedora linux, but Ctrl + - does, which means reducing font size is irreversiblly smaller!

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