Magnify the Screen

Category: Quickies


Bob, is it possible to change the size of the icons in the Quick Launch bar? I know someone who is not seeing so well and I want to make the icons larger. Is it also possible to make the whole taskbar (including the system tray and time) larger?


Yes, there are several options to magnify the screen, or portions of it, for visually impaired users. The Magnifier utility is free, and comes with Windows. To turn it on, click on

Start / All Programs / Accessories / Accessibility / Magnifier

The top portion of the screen will show a magnified view of the area where the mouse cursor is placed. If this doesn't meet your friend's needs, there are some software packages with additional features to help visually impaired users at this site:

This article was posted by on 23 Aug 2005

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Most recent comments on "Magnify the Screen"

Posted by:

21 Oct 2008

The person asking about how to magnify the icons in the quicklauch and tray areas of the taskbar should do the following:

1. Right-click the bottom edge of the quicklaunch area as close to the left as you can without touching the Start button. If you do it wrong you will simply see the usual "context menu" of one of the quicklaunch icons (which has "Open" as the top choice. If you do it correctly, you will see a diffent menu which includes "View" as the top item. Hover over "View" (or click it) to expand it and you will see a choice of "small icons" or "large icons".

2. There are other setings that interact to affect these icon sizes. Right-click any empty spot on the desktop and click on "Properties". then click "Appearance". From there you can click the "Effects" button to find a checkbox for "large icons". You can also click "Advanced" from the Appearance screen and alter the size of certain things in its "Item" dropdown list, for example: "Icon" (which affects only certain locations) and "Caption buttons", which affects others (including those little boxes in the upper-right corner of every window: "X", minimize, maximize/restore).

Appearance settings can interact and undo one another in maddening ways, however. You may need to apply them in a particular sequence to get them all to stick. Once you do, you can save the "Theme" (see theme tab of the main Display Properties screen) which will preserve most of the settings, at least for future recall using the same screen to choose that theme again.

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Article information: AskBobRankin -- Magnify the Screen (Posted: 23 Aug 2005)
Copyright © 2005 - Bob Rankin - All Rights Reserved