Enabling ClearType on Windows XP Mode

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If you are using Windows XP mode on an LCD display – you may notice that the font looks a little jagged.  The reason for this is simple.  ClearType is not enabled.

While Windows Vista and Windows 7 both enable ClearType by default – Windows XP (which was released when LCD screens were not as common as they are today) does not.

Thankfully it is quite easy to enable ClearType on Windows XP mode.  First, you will need to start Windows XP mode and login to the desktop (this should happen automatically for you).  Then you will need to:

  1. Right-click on the Desktop and select Properties
  2. Change to the Appearance tab in the Display Properties dialog
  3. Click on the Effects… button
  4. Make sure that Use the following method to smooth edges of screen fonts: is checked and choose the ClearType option (it will be Standard) by default:


  5. Hit OK on the Effects dialog and OK on the Display Properties dialog

After doing this you should notice an immediate improvement in the clarity of the fonts in Windows XP mode.


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  • yes, and don't forget to utilize the native resolution on your LCD!

  • > which was released when LCD screens

    > were not as common as they are today

    Maybe this can be further clarified. If I understood this properly, ClearType provides three different benefits:

    1) one is at the pixel level (full pixels, unrelated to LCD), and is similar to antialiasing but with font-specific knowledge

    2) a second one is based on knowledge of the actual sub-pixel patterns (with different effects depending for example on different LCD subpixel elements), i.e. the "antialiasing" is optimized for the subpixel pattern

    3) a third benefit is possible if the actual subpixels can be actively controlled (e.g. individually set or clear each subpixel, i.e. R, G, B or even Y on newer displays)

    The problem is, the virtual machine does not have a subpixel display, nor does it have knowledge about the host/client subpixel pattern, so how can LCD-like benefits be achieved?

    I think benefit 1 above is easily achieved by simply enabling ClearType, however it is not LCD-specific. Benefit 2 is more tricky (or does the host/remote client tell the guest what subpixel pattern is used on the physical display?), and benefit 3 is impossible (the virtualization technology AFAIK does not have subpixel bitmaps).

    Of course I would love to see this all work, but it would need Microsoft to implement a) a communications channel between host and guest where the guest knows about the host subpixel pattern, and b) a subpixel virtual display (which then will only work if supported on the physical host itself).

    Or did I misunderstand something?

  • On my PC nothing change if integration features are enabled, it's also impossible change the screen resolution, is fixed at 16bit.

    All works fine when integration features are disabled.

    Some ideas?


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Enabling ClearType on Windows XP Mode