ClearType for HTML

One of the first things you might notice after installing Internet Explorer 7 is that the type on the page seems darker.

Sample of text with ClearType for HTML turned on

Internet Explorer 7 has ClearType for HTML turned on by default (if you weren’t paying attention when IE 7 was being installed or didn’t know what ClearType for HTML was on the list of settings to review after Internet Explorer 7 was installed then you missed the chance to turn it off).

What is ClearType for HTML?

Microsoft has developed technology to make fonts clearer on the screen.

“ClearType is a software technology developed by Microsoft that improves the readability of text on existing LCDs (Liquid Crystal Displays), such as laptop screens, Pocket PC screens and flat panel monitors. With ClearType font technology, the words on your computer screen look almost as sharp and clear as those printed on a piece of paper. …”

Source:  Microsoft Typography – What is ClearType?

Turn Off ClearType for HTML

If you find ClearType for HTML annoying it can be turned off.

  1. Left click the down arrow beside the Tools icon in the toobar just above the web page portion of the browser window.
  2. Click Internet Options with the left mouse button.

    The Internet Options screen appears.

  3. On the far right of the Internet Opions screen there is a tab named Advanced. Left click it.

    The contents of the white box in the center of the Internet Options screen changes with a new list of items. Accessibility should be at the top of the list.

  4. Using the scroll bar on the right of the white box, scroll down to the section named Multimedia.

    It is quite a ways down the list. If you get to Printing or Security you have gone a bit too far.

  5. The first item under Multimedia is “Always use ClearType for HTML*” with a check mark in front of it. Left click in that box to remove the check mark.

    If you look in the bottom part of the Internet Options screen it tells you the * means this change will not take effect until Internet Explorer is restarted (closed and reopened)

  6. Left click the Ok button at the bottom of the Internet Options screen.

    You’ll see a time capsule showing the change is being applied then the Internet Options screen will close.

  7. Now, close Internet Explorer by clicking the X in the top right corner of the browser window.
  8. Reopen Internet Explorer and the dark text will have disappeared!

There a few other changes that happen when you install Internet Explorer 7 besides ClearType for HTML being turned on you will notice if you are an Internet Explorer user. We’ll cover them one by one so check back soon.

If you are a website owner or a Web Designer/Developer you may also wish to read What’s New in Internet Explorer 7 on Microsoft’s website to see how the changes will effect your website design.

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One Response to “ ClearType for HTML ”

  1. Deborah Friedman says:

    1. It does not make type darker.
    2. It makes all type appear to shift colors between purple and green on a character by character basis.
    3. It makes type appear fuzzy.
    4. It affects every application in Office including outlook, word and excel.
    5. It affects every other application as well.
    6. In an enterprise environment where the setting is controlled by policy it is extremely annoying not to be able to turn it off.
    7. It is making me go blind.

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