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For a quite some time I had had a nice font smoothing settings set on my Windows 7 Pro. I can't remember exactly how I set it, I'm sure I changed two parameters to get the effect:

  1. Control Panel -> Fonts -> "Adjust ClearType text"
  2. Control Panel > System > Advanced system settings > Performance Settings > Visual Effects -> "Smooth edges of screen fonts"

Fonts (I'm talking about popular fonts on websites (Chrome, Opera) - Arial, Verdana, Tahoma, etc.) had been looking nice and sharp. With those settings fonts with a smaller size (up to 16-17px) look 100% sharp (single color, no transparency/gray) and fonts with a bigger size are also nicely and sharply rendered (obviously not 100% sharp).

Yesterday I was watching a video on livestream and at one moment I lost my screen for a second, something like "Nvidia display driver has stopped responding and has recovered". After this I noticed that fonts look different, I checked the settings and in fact they were reset - ClearType and "Smooth edges of screen fonts" were enabled.

I tried to change the settings back, unfortunately I cannot get the same effect. What I can get is either default ClearType, which makes fonts look fuzzy, or no smoothing at all (no matter what is the font size, always a single color, 100% sharp).

I tried to reinstall the nvidia display driver. I tried every combination for FontSmoothing and FontSmoothingType in HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Desktop (via regedit). I tried a program called ClearType Switch. I also tried to get the effect on another computer (also Windows 7), still I cannot get it.

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    Maybe related: How to disable DirectWrite in Google Chrome 37? – G-Man Sep 6 '14 at 0:43
  • Wow. That's it. I rejected a Chrome related problem because fonts had been looking same on Opera, and I haven't updated it recently. I know they're both using WebKit, but I didn't know a Chrome update affects Opera. Big thanks @G-Man! – Jack Sep 6 '14 at 10:33

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