How to Access “Advanced Appearance Settings” Option and Change Font Size, Color in Windows 8 and Later?

UPDATE: This tutorial will also work in Windows 8.1 and later.

After receiving so many emails from lots of AskVG readers regarding same problem, today I decided to post this article. Many people who are using Microsoft's latest OS Windows 8, are wondering where is the "Advanced Appearance Settings" option?

Actually in previous Windows versions such as Windows XP, Vista or Windows 7, users could customize the text size and color using "Advanced appearance settings" option present in Desktop Properties (Personalization) window.

But unfortunately Microsoft has removed this feature from Windows 8. But there is a similar option available in Windows 8 to change screen text size.

So if you are also using Windows 8 and want to access "Advanced appearance settings" option in Windows 8, this tutorial will help you.

In this tutorial, we are going to tell you how to change text size of title bars, menus, message boxes, palette titles, icons and tooltips in Windows 8.

We have divided this tutorial in 2 parts:

  • METHOD 1: Using Desktop Personalization
  • METHOD 2: Using Registry Editor

So without wasting time lets start the tutorial:

METHOD 1: Using Desktop Personalization

1. Right-click on Desktop and select "Screen resolution" option.


2. It'll open "Screen Resolution" window which allows you to change screen resolution and orientation. Click on the link "Make text and other items larger or smaller" as shown in following screenshot:


3. It'll open "Display" settings window. Alternatively, you can open "Display" window by selecting "Personalize" option from Desktop context menu and then click on "Display" link given at the bottom of left-sidebar.

Or you can direct open Display settings using following command in RUN dialog box:

explorer.exe shell:::{C555438B-3C23-4769-A71F-B6D3D9B6053A}



Now you can change the text size of various items such as icons, title bars, etc by selecting the item from drop-down list and then selecting the desired size for it from the 2nd drop-down box.


4. Once you set the desired text size, click on "Apply" button.

METHOD 2: Using Registry Editor

If you want to change other advanced appearance settings which are not available in the above mentioned location of Windows 8 such as background color, border padding, caption buttons size, icon size, icon spacing, scrollbar size, etc, you can change or customize them using Windows Registry.

1. Press "WIN+R" key combination to launch RUN dialog box then type regedit and press Enter. It'll open Registry Editor. Now go to following keys one by one:

HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Colors
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Desktop\Colors
HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Desktop\WindowMetrics

Above mentioned Registry keys store all the advanced appearance settings information, so you can customize the advanced appearance settings in Windows 8 by changing the values of various DWORD and strings given in the right-side pane.


TIP: These Registry keys are same for Windows Vista, Windows 7 and Windows 8. So to make the task easier, you can boot into Windows 7 and customize the advanced appearance settings using Desktop Personalization window. Then open Registry Editor and take a backup of the above mentioned Registry keys by right-click on them and select Export option. It'll create .REG files. Copy those REG files to Windows 8 computer and run them. The Registry scripts will add those customized settings to Windows 8. Restart Windows 8 computer and you'll see the new settings.

That's it. This is how you can access "Advanced Appearance Settings" option in Windows 8.

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Posted in: Troubleshooting, Windows 8 / 8.1

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