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gnat (29)

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Journal of gnat (29)

Tuesday February 25, 2003
05:25 PM

Quick poll: Terminal fonts

[ #10787 ]
What font do you use in your terminal window? I'm a Lucida Sans Typewriter fan myself. I've just started a radical experiment, using a non-monospaced font. When I need to edit code, I open a window with a monospaced font, but for most things, it seems to be a little more readable to have a proportionally-spaced font on the screen. The only problem is that the terminal window is about twice as wide as it needs to be, apparently because it's allocating space of a row of 'm's.


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  • I use Courier New. Nothing original about it, but it works.

    While on the subject of proportional fonts, who's the friggin' genius who made the proportional "Microsoft Sans Serif" font the default option for stored procedures and SQL in MS SQL Server? Aargh! The pain, the pain! Of course, I can go to Tools -> Font and change it, but it doesn't do anything other than warn me that I chose a non-standard font.


  • Monaco regular 20pt antialiased.

    Gives you 80x26 lines on an iBook terminal, and no headaches.

    And green on black naturally, just the way God intended it!
    • Monaco *20pt*? Isn't that a little... large?

      Personally, I've always used Monaco 9, preferably the pre Mac OS 8.6 version (which has smaller punctuation, although the I and l and 0 and O are indistinguishable, which used to be the sort of annoyance that got Profont a following. Still, I like it, enough to stick it in ~/Library/Fonts/).

      That gives me 4 80x24 Terminals (or MacSSH windows, when I'm back in Mac OS 9) on my 1024x768 display, which seems about right. Black on white, of course, the way... someone
      • Isn't that a little... large?

        Not when you code 10 or 12 straight hours for days on end. Making things easy on your eyes is essential.

        Sure, at such a large point size I only get one terminal, which fills my entire screen. But that's what the Cmd-` key is for. I vastly prefer to flip through a temporal series of windows than to raster through a spatial array of them.

        Interestingly, I'll be talking about that very topic (amongst others) in a tutorial I'm giving at OSCON this year, focusing on n

  • 8x13bold
    Lucida Sans Unicode
    Were that I say, pancakes?
  • I'm a Monaco 12 man. Easy enough to read, but monospaced to satisfy my orderly side.
  • Heretic (Score:3, Interesting)

    by ziggy (25) on 2003.02.25 19:32 (#17480) Journal
    The one true font, of course: fixed in an xterm window. :-)

    I get two 80x40 xterms on the screen side-by-side in an 1024x768 window, with about 1/4 of the screen unused (by xterms) on the bottom. Using fixed has the added benefit of being the only configuration that will properly render mutt's ascii graphics for thread display.

    I've been using 80x40 xterms with fixed font for so many years now, anything else just looks strange.

    • -misc-fixed-medium-r-normal--20-200-75-75-c-100-iso8859-1

      in a 51 row, 114 column xterm, running screen with TERM set to xterm. This makes w3m-img work inside screen! Woot!

      Plus it neatly fills most of a 1280x1024 display, which even cheap four-year-old graphics cards can do at a nice refresh rate.

      XTerm*foreground: rgb:ff/88/12
      XTerm*background: rgb:00/00/00
      XTerm*cursorColor: rgb:be/00/10

      The font has lines more than one pixel wide, for easy legibility. I actually switch to w3m from gale
  • Font (Score:3, Informative)

    by Theory (10) on 2003.02.25 20:32 (#17482) Homepage Journal

    11 point Lucida Sans Typewriter in my Carbonized emacs, and Monaco Regular 10.0 pt. in Terminal.


  • by jordan (120) on 2003.02.25 22:53 (#17486) Homepage Journal
    Any serif font is hard to read when small.

    It's the cleanest mono-spaced font I've ever seen. The dots in the middle of the zeros is really great.

    I've heard people use it in Linux, which is why Microsoft withdrew it from their web site, but it's still out there, and the license allows for free distribution, if I remember correctly.

  • Courier, plain and simple.
  • -b&h-lucidatypewriter-medium-r-normal-*-*-100-*-*-m-*-iso8859-1 everywhere.

    I broke my glasses the other day, and that small font turned out to be too small. I experimented with Helvetica in my xterms. And I found out that non-monospaced fonts are pretty unusable in xterms.

  • Monaco 13... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by jhi (318) <> on 2003.02.26 14:37 (#17527) Homepage Journal Mac OS X Terminal. I'm thinking of paying for Everson Mono, though, and trying that one out.

  • that my DEC vt220 gives me: on and off.
  • ProFont (Score:3, Interesting)

    by pudge (1) on 2003.02.26 23:36 (#17547) Homepage Journal
    ProFont is my favorite; I use it in Terminal, BBEdit, Eudora, Chimera, everything where I need one. I use a 9-point, which a lot of people find to be too small.

    ProFont is basically Monaco with distinguishable 1lI0O etc., but the current Monaco is improved in that regard. I think ProFont looks best at 9 points, Monaco at slightly larger points, and ProFont at much larger points (say, 36).
  • -efont-fixed-medium-r-normal--24-240-75-75-c-120-iso10646-1

    It's a Unicode font with a full set of CJK glyphs.

    The 24 pixel font looks good, even the kanji. My screen has a high dot-pitch so the xterm geometry is 96x40.
    • Best mono font for terminal use (and source code) is the HVFont ( The TTF version HVEdit is much clearer than ProFont and the raster version is brilliant in code editors even at 8 pts.
  • What is the Sun EEPROM font? I think its also the boot font but I'm not sure...however I do know that I love it.