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Firefox Browser Usage and Support Forum

Firefox 2.0 mac not anti-aliasing small text

 6:06 pm on Mar 6, 2008 (gmt 0)

This seems like a question that would have been answered a million times over but apparently I'm not searching for the right terms; does anyone know why Helvetica type 9px and smaller SOMETIMES isn't anti-aliased in FF 2 for mac? I say sometimes because I've been to websites using said browser at those font sizes and they seem to anti-alias just fine.

What am I missing?



 2:03 am on Mar 8, 2008 (gmt 0)

If you open a tab and type
about:config in the address bar, you can filter for the following config setting:


This sets the minimum font size (in pixels) for antialiasing. If you modify the integer value to a lower number, smaller text will be antialiased.


 9:02 pm on Mar 10, 2008 (gmt 0)

I appreciate the reply but what's really perplexing me is that sites like facebook.com antialias fonts regardless of my personal browser settings or font size whereas my own designs are obeying the browser settings and turning off antialiasing on fonts 10px or smaller.

What I want to know is, are they doing something to force FF to antialias and if so what is it?


 9:10 pm on Mar 10, 2008 (gmt 0)

After looking around, it seems that it's due to facebook's use of lucida grande which, for some reason, FF appears to always antialias. Is this due to an absence of a bitmap version of this font?


 12:33 am on Mar 11, 2008 (gmt 0)

> Is this due to an absence of a bitmap version of this font?

I can't confirm that, but I suspect that you're on the right track - your explanation certainly makes sense. :) There is no method I know of which could force Firefox to anti-alias text smaller than the defined minimum.

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