How to use the Windows 7 Magnifier to Make the Computer Screen Easier to See

Did you know that Windows has a utility that allows you to magnify what’s on the screen? Some form of this utility has been in Windows for years but it doesn’t seem to be all that well known. In Windows 7, it comes with a variety of keyboard shortcuts that make using it quite easy. It is part of the Ease of Access Center discussed in a previous tip  It can be accessed there by opening the Ease of Access Center with the keyboard shortcut
         Windows key+U
or directly with the keyboard combination
         Windows key and Plus Sign(+)

The utility can be used to magnify all or part of the screen and has three different modes of operation:
  • Full-screen mode—In full-screen mode, the entire screen is magnified. 
  • Lens mode—In lens mode, a separate window around the mouse pointer is created that acts like a magnifying glass. When you move the mouse pointer, this window moves along with it.
  • Docked mode— In docked mode, the magnified area is docked to the top of the screen. This is the only mode available if Aero is disabled.

Magnifier can be managed with a variety of shortcuts, which are given in the table below.

Keyboard shortcuts for configuring and managing Magnifier
 
Keyboard combination Action
Windows  key and Plus Sign (+) or Minus Sign (-) Zoom in or out
Ctrl+Alt+Spacebar Preview the desktop in full-screen mode
Ctrl+Alt+F Switch to full-screen mode
Ctrl+Alt+L Switch to lens mode
Ctrl+Alt+D Switch to docked mode
Ctrl+Alt+I Invert colors
Ctrl+Alt+arrow keys Pan in the direction of the arrow keys
Ctrl+Alt+R Resize the lens
Windows  key + Esc Exit Magnifier
 
More information: Microsoft
 
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This tips section is maintained by Vic Laurie. Vic runs a Windows blog called The PC Informant and also operates a computer education website.

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