Turn on font smoothing in Xcode

January 05, 2007

Using TextMate the past month, I’ve come to realize that I like font smoothing turned on when writing code. Although there’s a setting for font smoothing in System Preferences, Xcode doesn’t seem to respect it if you’re still using the default editor font, Monaco 10pt. The problem isn’t actually with Xcode; OSX uses a separate setting when dealing with fixed width fonts like Monaco. You can change this by running a terminal command:

defaults write .GlobalPreferences AppleSmoothFixedFontsSizeThreshold 4

Replace 4 with whatever minimum font size you like. Of course, you could use the same setting to turn off font smoothing, if you like the jagged look with large font sizes. You can make this setting specific to Xcode by replacing .GlobalPreferences with com.apple.Xcode.

Marc Charbonneau is a mobile software engineer in Portland, OR. Want to reply to this article? Get in touch on Twitter @mbcharbonneau.