HiDPI on Linux

hi-dpi still is a handfull on linux.. gnome 3 supports it quite well for now, but it is far from perfect.

i recently ran a do-release-upgrade on my ubuntu gnome and it switched to some insane scaling factor showing only a quarter of my desktop on my screen.

i had a hard time to get my whole terminal window into sight again because the mouse was disaligned.

in the end i managed to open a new terminal window hitting ctrl + shift + n

i then entered this command to scale to a level where i could see the entire destkop again:

gsettings set org.gnome.desktop.interface scaling-factor 1

here is another interesting one:

gsettings set org.gnome.settings-daemon.plugins.xsettings overrides "{ 'Gdk/WindowScalingFactor':<2>, 'Gdk/UnscaledDPI':<92160> }"

and here's one to change the windows frame text size:

gsettings set org.gnome.desktop.interface text-scaling-factor 1.5

in firefox type


into the addressbar, in thunderbird click the menu (hamburger) button and select Preferences. In the Preferences window, switch to the Advanced tab and open the config editor

The setting of interest is called:


Here's an example of the configuration i am currently using on my lenovo x1 carbon notebook:

psuter@psnote:~$ gsettings get org.gnome.desktop.interface scaling-factor
uint32 2
psuter@psnote:~$ gsettings get org.gnome.settings-daemon.plugins.xsettings overrides
{'Gdk/WindowScalingFactor': <2>}
psuter@psnote:~$ gsettings get org.gnome.desktop.interface text-scaling-factor

and in Firefox and thunderbird i have

  • linux_hidpi.txt
  • Last modified: 12.08.2015 10:45
  • by Pascal Suter