Font Anti-Aliasing and Mac OS X 10.6

Mac users may have noticed the options for adjusting font anti-aliasing / smoothing in Mac OS X 10.6 (Snow Leopard) have mysteriously disappeared from the “Appearance” section of System Preferences.  With Mac OS X 10.5 (Leopard) and before, users could control the level of font smoothing with classifications such as: Automatic, Standard, Light, Medium, and Strong.

Luckily, this now hidden preference, can still be accessed via the Terminal. Run the following command as the local user:

defaults -currentHost write -globalDomain AppleFontSmoothing -int 1

and replace the number at the end for the selection you wish:

1 – Light
2 – Medium
3 – Strong

Finally, log out and log back in to see the changes applied to the Finder and all applications.  A special “thank you” goes to Mac OS X Hints for supplying the information for this post.

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