Use ClearType® to ‘clearly see’ how to make more money

ClearType delivers improved font display quality over traditional forms of font smoothing or anti-aliasing. ClearType improves readability on color LCD displays with a digital interface, such as those in laptops and high-quality flat panel displays. Readability on CRT screens can also be somewhat improved.

To make sure that text displayed within Windows® XP Mode applications looks sharp (Figure 1), you need to enable ClearType:

ClearType Fig1

Figure 1.  Fonts displayed in a ClearType enabled virtual application (Right) are sharper

ClearType can be enabled in Windows XP Mode by following the below steps:

  1. Start Windows XP Mode (From the Windows 7 Start menu, click Windows Virtual PC, and then click on Windows XP Mode)
  2. On Windows XP Mode desktop click Start, click Control Panel, click Appearance and Themes, and then click Display.
  3. On the Appearance tab, click Effects.
  4. Click to select the Use the following method to smooth edges of screen fonts check box, and then click ClearType in the list.

Before enabling ClearType, I used to get a headache while reading emails (using Outlook® 2007 running in Windows XP Mode) from my manager, colleagues & wife. After enabling ClearType, I don’t get headaches any more, while reading emails from my manager and colleagues. Ahem!!! 

Check out Windows XP Mode RTM Build today, and let us know what you think, either via the comments section here, or sharing your feedback on the WVPC and Windows XP Mode Forum on Technet here.

Akash Maheshwari

Program Manager

Microsoft Virtualization Team

Comments (9)

  1. shreesh says:

    @Virtual Geek – thanks for your candid comment. We wanted the general user to discover this feature.  Also, we plan on posting more tips/tricks soon so don’t give up yet 🙂

    @Flavor – yes, cleartype is for LCD which is the largest used screen. For CRTs, you could turn it off

    shreesh dubey [MSFT]

  2. shreesh says:

    @7Flavor – Ouch! can you send me more details on this issue at ?  Thanks

    Shreesh Dubey [MSFT]

  3. Virtual Geek says:


    A n00b trick on a dev blog ?

    What’s the point ?

    /me go back to the Virtual PC Guy’s Blog…

  4. 7flavor says:

    ClearType is awesome and much-needed but only for LCDs. MS took the wrong decision of shoving it down our throats by using fonts like Segoe UI and parts of the OS which can’t disable ClearType which makes our heads spin using CRTs no matter how to tweak it using the ClearType tuner.

  5. 7flavor says:

    @shreesh, but even if I turn it off, it is still used in some parts of the UI and the font Segoe UI itself is too heavily anti-aliased and sub-pixel rendered making Windows 7 and Vista useless (bleeding eyes) for CRT users.

  6. Mark says:

    Using VPC (Win 7 64Bit) with Integration Features Enabled seems to turn off ClearType!

  7. SWingard says:

    @Mark: It’s not limited to x64 – I’m using Win7 Professional x86 and I see that ClearType is not working when Integration Features are enabled in Virtual PC.

  8. tahlyn says:

    at least in Windows 7 64-bit Windows Virtual PC (I'm using the Windows XP sp3 IE7 VHD), you can have "Integration Features" enabled and have ClearType working in Internet Explorer 7 at the same time.

    found the first part of the information here:…/how-to-increase-color-depth-and-quality-of-windows-xp-accessed-via-remote-desktop-or-terminal-services

    First, disable Integration Features before continuing with the procedure. After changing the maximum color depth limit, re-enable the integration features.

    1. In the Windows XP operating system (remote system), click on Start menu, then Run.

    2. Type GPEdit.msc to open Group Policy Editor.

    3. Navigate to Local Computer Policy -> Computer Configuration -> Administrative Templates -> Windows Components -> Terminal Services.

    4. In the right pane, double-click on the Limit Maximum Color Depth setting.

    5. In the Properties dialog, select radio button of Enabled, and then set Color Depth value to 24 bit.

    6. restart the image by going to ACTION > RESTART (very top left of the Windows Virtual PC program).

    then from this link:…/7ccc8c6f-7580-4c2d-97e1-5ecbfefe47fe

    1. In the Windows XP operating system (remote system), click on Start menu, then Run.

    2. Type regedit to open the Registry Editor.

    3. Navigate to [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESYSTEMCurrentControlSetControlTerminal ServerWinStations]

    4. add a new DWORD called "AllowFontAntiAlias" (without quotes) and set the value to one.  The value will display as "0x00000001(1)"

    5. restart the image by going to ACTION > RESTART (very top left of the Windows Virtual PC program).

    you may or may not have to restart between each step, but I did.  After this, I had the "Integration Features" enabled with ClearType working in Internet Explorer 7 in Windows Virtual PC.

  9. John Kingsley says:

    I am running a  Foxpro 2.6a  Database program   they work perfectly  under  32 bit operating systems but when I use  Windows Virtual PC in  XP mode  my screens in  Foxpro 2.6a  get cut  off for some reason losing  important  data.  Its there  but there is no way to scroll or display it.

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