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I ran a program under WINE and when it terminated, suddenly lots of programs were running with tiny fonts, including Google Chrome, Unison, and PLT Scheme. I think what these programs have in common is they all use GTK. I am running Debian Linux without a Gnome desktop. As suggested on the web, I put this text in ~/.gtkrc-2.0:

style "user-font"
    font_name="BitStreamVeraSans 14"
widget_class "*" style "user-font"
gtk-font-name="BitStreamVeraSans 14"

Unfortunately this change has had no discernible effect.

How can I escape the land of tiny-fonted ones?

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

I tracked down the problem and in the end it was a combination of GTK and other factors. Somehow WINE changed the physical screen size as reported by xdpyinfo. As a result the DPI was computed to be 56—way too small.

The solution was to change the X server to use the correct size by running xrandr --screen 0 --fbmm 287x180.

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This fixed my fonts after removing some gnome packages in debian. What exactly does changing the fbmm do? – TheOne Jan 16 '14 at 14:47

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