©2019 Donald R. Snow - Last updated 2019-07-06

Don's Freeware Corner notes are printed in the UTAH VALLEY TECHNOLOGY AND GENEALOGY GROUP (UVTAGG) Newsletter TAGGology each month and are posted on his Class Notes Page where there may be corrections and updates.



Us old codgers and codgerettes sometimes have a hard time reading the text on our computer screens. It would be helpful if Windows had a setting where you could just hold down some key and roll the mouse wheel or press + and make all text darker in all applications. The closest thing Windows claims to have is changing the fonts to bold. There are instructions of how to do that in the Windows 10 Helps and my family and I spent hours trying to make that work. Finally, a son-in-law found an article in a computer magazine that said that Microsoft has disabled that in Windows 10, even though their instructions tell you how to do it. They should at least put a note at the top of their Helps article telling you to disregard it, since it won't work. This Freeware Corner article is about a work-around to make some of the text more readable.


If you know enough about working with the computer Registry in Windows 10, there are ways to change the fonts there, but most of us don't have the computer science qualifications to do that and it is easy to foul up your computer by working in the Registry and not knowing what you are doing. To solve this problem a Russian program developer has written a freeware program called WINAERO TWEAKER that allows you to change the Registry without being an expert. Besides changing fonts, the program provides ways to change more than 100 other things in Windows 10.


This is a free program downloadable from . Here are two helpful articles about WINAERO TWEAKER,
and .

You download the installation file and then install it.  Up until recently it was a zip file that had to be extracted and then run. Now you install the download file, just like other programs, and you can put icons on your desktop and/or on your taskbar to run it. It has many, many Windows settings changes, so you can run Windows 10 the way you want. The changeable settings are listed in a scrolling window in categories, as in the following screenshot.
the left panel shows the categories and as you highlight a category, all possible changes in that category are shown in the right panel.  Most of the categories have several subcategories and some have 30 or 40 subcategories. This screenshot was made when the cursor was on Advanced Appearance Settings, so the right panel shows the icons of the subcategories of that.  Each of these subcategories is set up similarly. When you are looking at a subcategory, at the top of its right panel is a box to check if you want to reset that option to its Windows 10 default setting. Also near the top is usually an option to go to the online WINAERO TWEAKER website, where that option is described in detail, so you know exactly what it will change. In most cases the option is explained clearly enough in good English right in the program for you to know what it does without going to the website.  When you click to change an option, boxes appear at the bottom to ask if you want to restart Windows 10 now or wait and restart it manually later. Restarting is necessary for the changes to take effect, so, if you are only changing one item, click to restart now.  But if you are changing several options, you can save time by clicking to restart manually later after you have made the other changes.


There is a search box at the top left, so I searched for "font" (without the quotes) and got 3 occurrences, Message Font, Statusbar Font, and System Font. These are each in Advanced Appearance Settings. In each of these there are boxes that show the current font and what words look like in that font. As you select other fonts, you can see what the words would look it in those fonts before you make the change. I've found that the font Tahoma Bold and 11 point works well for my poor eyesight. The options point out that this may not change the text in every app since some can't be overridden because of the the way they are written. When you click Apply Changes, the Reboot Now or Later panel shows up. I made all three font changes before rebooting. The three text places that I could change are now easier for me to read, but, unfortunately, there are many other places I need changed that t this doesn't change, e.g. the text of instructions in my browsers.  But, being able to change some is better than none.


It would be nice if Windows had a simple way to just reset all text to be darker without changing the fonts. Or maybe that could be built into monitors, so you could change the darkness of all text. It seems like an easy problem to solve and would be important for those of us with poor eyesight. This is next best. By the way, one of my techie grandkids wrote me a special program that makes some of the text in my Chrome browser bold. He wrote it and sent me instructions to install it, so it can be turned on or off. His program even makes the text in my Gmails more readable and it is greatly appreciated. Maybe he will write it as a Chrome extension so others can use it.


WiINAERO TWEAKER is a freeware program with lots of good options. It has so many options that I will be writing other Freeware Corner articles about it. If any of you come across other ways to make text darker, please let me know. ========================