Font Size

I've had a good hunt around and can't seem to find an answer, so it's over to you.

Is there a way to have the font size in the Zotero main pane set as small but then use a larger size in the text edit box/note taking?

Note taking with a small font is tough on the eyes and reference editing with a larger font is all scroll bars.
  • edited September 6, 2013
    [Edit: A better method is explained below.]

    There's no way to do this through the UI currently, but we could probably add a preference to control note font size separately.

    If you're familiar with CSS, you could make the change yourself by modifying a file.

    For example, adding

    textbox {
    font-size: 14px;

    to chrome/skin/default/zotero/bindings/noteeditor.css would do the trick in Zotero 1.0.

    In 1.5, you'd want to edit the "body, td, pre" block in chrome/skin/default/zotero/tinymce/note-content.css.
  • Cheers Dan, it's certainly something I'd find handy.

    When I'm done with my current projects and have some time to breathe I'll have a poke around and see if I can get it behaving how I'd like it.

    Looking forward to seeing what you've come up with in 1.5.
  • edited September 6, 2013
    [This method isn't recommended. See below. - DS]

    Thanks much, Dan!

    And it would indeed be very nice if this were adjustable through the UI somehow.

    Let me provide simple directions for how to do this for those who might benefit from them.

    1. Exit Firefox, and on a typical Windows Vista machine navigate to C:\Users\SE\AppData\Roaming\Mozilla\Firefox\Profiles\qyme3hyz.default\extensions\\chrome

    2. There you will see zotero.jar. Make a backup copy of it and rename it zotero.jar.bak

    3. Use something like TugZip to decompress zotero.jar

    4. With the result (three main folders and their contents), navigate to skin\default\zotero\tinymce

    5. There you will see note-content.css. Open it in Notepad

    6. Change the font-size to your liking. 16px was best for me. I also placed Times New Roman as the first entry in font-family

    7. Save (replace by writing over) the file you just modified

    8. Repackage the contents of zotero.jar (the three main folders and their contents) as zotero.jar and use this to replace the version you just backed up

    9. Done!
  • edited September 6, 2013
    [A better method is now available. See below. - DS]

    A much easier method of changing the note font size in 1.5 (and one that won't require repeating every time a new version of Zotero comes out) is to create a chrome/userChrome.css file within your Firefox profile containing something like this:

    body.mceContentBody, body.mceContentBody p, body.mceContentBody pre {
    font-size: 14px !important;

    This might affect other Firefox extensions that use TinyMCE, so we'll add a more specific id to the notes in a future release.
  • I followed these instructions, restarted Firefox, and found no change at all. The font is the same small, almost unreadable size.
  • Same here. I followed the instructions (used ChromEdit to change the userChrome.css file on my Mac) and nothing changed.
  • Same here. Need to make Editor font easier to enlarge and change fontface.
  • ditto for me (Firefox 3.07 on 64-bit Linux).

    Is there any kind of log file I can inspect to verify my userChrome.css settings are taking effect?
  • Yes! Zotero is great for me so far, but my note-taking is more evolved than what the text editor currently allows. (I in fact like to take notes in outline form, but that may be asking too much...)
  • For those who are still stuck on creating the css file, I think the trick may be to delete the .txt from the end of the file so it becomes only userChrome.css Make sure this is the in the chrome folder and it should work.
  • I'm not sure what changed (there was no .txt at the end of my css file), but I followed these instructions again, and they worked. Thanks! Maybe I was putting it in the wrong folder? userChrome.css needs to be placed in a subfolder called 'chrome' within the Firefox profile folder.
  • Yes, I'm having success with above thread to modify appearance of notes. I know the developers would like end users to "write code" and it's so easy. Personally, I think it's OK just to be just an end user--I'd pay for Zotero to avoid having to write code for it--that's what programmers are for, right?

    By the way, is there a code statement for notes font to be in Times New Roman font? I'll put that statement into the userChrome.css file as well. Thanks in advance.
  • @bradco: so pay someone to do it ;-)
  • edited September 6, 2013
    [Edit: See below for an easier way to do this. — D.S]
    By the way, is there a code statement for notes font to be in Times New Roman font?
    body.mceContentBody, body.mceContentBody p {
    font-family: "Times New Roman", serif;
    (I removed the pre-formatted text, as TNR is not fixed-width.)
  • adjusting userChrome.css in the mentioned way only has impact on normal text (p) not on headlines (which might be tolerable) and even not on numbered or bullet lists.

    Ho to resize all a little bit?
  • edited May 4, 2009
    @polar: read up on CSS. If, for example, you change this ...

    body.mceContentBody, body.mceContentBody p {
    font-family: "Times New Roman", serif;

    ... to this:

    body.mceContentBody, body.mceContentBody p, li, blockquote {
    font-family: "Times New Roman", serif;

    ... then the rule will apply to list items and blockquotes too (though it's untested, and just for illustration).
  • Hi, I just started using Zotero and it's a really nice piece of software.

    For what it's worth, however, not having an easily adjustable font size makes it almost unusable for those of us with poor eyesight. Yes, yes, I too have played with the chome css file to no avail. I would love to spend more time with it but I have my real work to do to.

    I just wanted to comment that an adjustable font feature would be greatly appreciated if and when a developer gets a chance.

    All the best.
  • edited May 27, 2009
    userChrome.css isn't doing anything for me either.

    I can change #zotero-item-pane so I know I'm working on the right file etc. Would be great if someone could confirm this works with zotero 2.0b4, ff 3.0.10 ...
  • Would be great if someone could confirm this works with zotero 2.0b4, ff 3.0.10 ...
    Tested just now with Fx3.0.10 on OS X, Fx3.5b5 on OS X, and Fx3.0.10 on Windows XP. You could try disabling other Firefox extensions, though I'd be somewhat surprised if any were affecting this.

    We should be able to make this more easily customizable, but the instructions above are correct.
  • edited May 28, 2009
    I can't seem to change the font via userChrome.css and finally just hacked the jar file. Two separate machines, both running linux - ubuntu 9.04. (Doesn't seem like Linux would be an issue here but maybe.)

    For the record, I tried with no plugins or extensions, same problem. Was able to use DOM Inspector to navigate to the html and tweak (temporarily) the css there, so it's not being ignored entirely. But with userChrome.css, can change everything in the UI except the note font. Even tried the universal selector * ... that changed font size everywhere except the note.
  • userContent.css or userChrome.css?
  • sorry, userChrome.css (edited my previous post to correct).
  • edited May 30, 2009
    I read all contributions on this subject as I found it necessary to increase the font size in the notes, otherwise it would be useless. First I spent some hours trying to get the "userChrome.css-method" to work, but without any success. Then I tried the first menitoned method the "de-zip zotero.jar file etc - metod", and the problem was fixed in a few minutes!! Do not waste your time on userChrome.css if you do not know on forehand how it work.
  • Note font size is configurable via the Zotero preferences in 2.0b4, available now. Typeface is currently configurable via a hidden pref, extensions.zotero.note.fontFamily, accessible via about:config. There's also a hidden pref, extensions.zotero.note.css, for custom CSS, for which you'll need to add the selectors (e.g., "li", "blockquote") yourself.
  • unfortunately now only the normal text (the html <p>) is affected by the preferences. Which was actually also the problem adjusting it via userChrome.css

    It would be nice to change the size of all tags proportionally.

    I got this in the previous versions via changing the note-content.css:

    body, td, pre {
    <------>font-size: 14px;
    <------>font-family: Lucida Grande, Tahoma, Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif;

    Any solution?
  • polar: Should be fixed in 2.0b6, available now.
  • I've got a different, though probably related issue. I recently tried out another theme for Firefox, since I've switched back to the default theme the item list is displayed in boldface. Changing themes thereafter did not have any effect, neither did adding
    #zotero-items-tree {font-weight: normal !important}
    to userChrome.css. Any hints?
  • Could someone with access to the knowledge base add the instructions to set the pane font size smaller to the font size page? The extensions.zotero.fontSize preference in about:config does the trick, but it's not documented. As it stands, the KB entry is just a repeat of the Preferences documentation.
  • Thank you @Dan Stillman

    In Zotero Standalone for Mac, I opened Preference, Advanced, General, Open about:config. There I made a search for "note". I found the extensions.zotero.note.fontSize and set it to 13 instead of 11.
    It worked perfectly after I restarted Zotero application.

    So happy about this change !!!
  • @neelo Great, thanks for your hint.
    In the latest version of Zotero standalone 4.0.29, Edit-preference-General, there is an option to change the font size of note
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