How do I know if I need to install and run the ClearType tuner?
It's like chicken soup; it couldn't hurt. It is a very simple procedure that will present you with several examples of text and you select the one that looks the best to you. The application which is free from Microsoft (see below) does the rest.
How do I know if I need to enable ClearType system-wide?
If the text on a web page looks crisper in Internet Explorer than Firefox, chances are that you do not have ClearType enabled system-wide. An iHub board listing is a good example - just open the same page in an IE browser and a FireFox browser and compare them side-by-side. If the text in the Firefox browser looks washed-out, it mostly likely is not using ClearType .
Download the ClearType Tuner PowerToy free from Microsoft.
This will help you to optimize your ClearType settings for your particular video configuration.
http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/downloads/powertoys/xppowertoys.mspx (The 4th one down the list on the right).
How to make sure ClearType is enabled system-wide.
- Right click on an empty area of your Desktop.
- Select Properties from the list.
- Click on the Appearance tab.
- Click the Effects button.
- Make sure your settings match the red-highlighted area in the above example.
- Click OK.
You're finished - ClearType has been enabled Windows-wide on your system.