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Font size standardization

Status: New

Re-opening because LabVIEW NXG has been discontinued.

Once in a while I complain about font issues in general (here, here, or here), but one of the really weird things are the font sizes as used in LabVIEW.


The font dialog lists them as units of pt, but for some reason they are quite different in size from the same sizes in any other applications (browser, word, etc.). LabVIEW also shows other problems, for example tahoma 14, 15 all look exactly the same... why??


Here is a side-by-side comparison of a wordpad document and a LabVIEW panel. Each line is configured for the indicated font size.


As you can easily see, LabVIEW is the exception. Any other applications I tried agrees with the left panel.


Idea -->LabVIEW should also standardize here!





Please, please please do something about the font situation. Fonts need to translate transparently from development to deployment environment.

I'm working on a program and the FP looks fine on my 24" monitor running in Labview. I build an executable and run it on the same computer and the fonts are wrong - overlapping, hidden, affecting control size, etc.

I found thread on the Labview discussion forum where GerdW mentions that some keys need to added to the executable's INI file for a Windows 7 app.

The example shown was: 

    FPFont="Tahoma" 13

    BDFont="Tahoms" 13

    appFont="Tahoma" 13

    dialogFont="Tahoma" 13

    systemFont="Tahoma" 13

I tried this with the last 3 entries and had some success but now some other, much larger text had been modified . I right clicked the new problem text on the FP in Labview and there is no indication what the current font settings are. I can blindly change them but don't know what I'm changing from. As the FP looks OK in Labview I'd have to build every project and run it, then go back to Labview and try blindly screwing it up so it would look OK when built.

Also, the INI file is regenerated on each build so I either have to figure out how to make and include a template file in the build that will add the required font information but not mess up anything else.

All of this doesn't include moving from one monitor size to another or from one version of Windows to another, which doesn't seem to be a problem.  



Large Font support is currently poor in LabVIEW compiled executables. In Windows 7, if you set Control Panel>Appearance and Personalization>Display to 125% or 150%, on some computers button text will overrun the buttons, and labels will run into other things. From what I can tell so far, it seems to depend on the video card/driver. What seems to happen is that all windows, buttons, and fonts get scaled up, and then with some graphics drivers, the fonts also get enlarged. So, the fonts get enlarged twice and then are too big. If a user were to modify the individual Windows UI fonts in Control Panel>Appearance and Personalization>Window Color and Appearance>Advanced (if they can find this in its new illogical location), it might work OK (haven't tried it), but a user is much more likely to just alter the Display size.


The only apparent work-around is to add a text size property for EVERY control, indicator, and label in your UI, which will lock down the text size so it isn't scaled by Windows (per the LabVIEW KB article "Why Does the Font Size Change When Running a LabVIEW Executable in Windows?"). We just did this for a distributed application and it took hours and required over one hundred property nodes to be added.


This isn't exactly the same as the issues discussed previously in this Idea, but it seems that it is all related to revamping the font engine, so if/when that is done, this problem should be addressed and resolved as part of it.

Proven Zealot
Status changed to: In Development
DNatt, NI
Proven Zealot
Status changed to: Completed

Available in LabVIEW NXG 1.0. Font sizes are standard in the NXG editor.

DNatt, NI
Knight of NI

According to Darren,

"Status changed to: Completed

Available in LabVIEW NXG 1.0. Font sizes are standard in the NXG editor.

DNatt, LV R&D"
Well, that means that (probably) as of LabVIEW 2018, which is the only version of LabVIEW that can do "Real Engineering" at the present time, the Font Issue is still unresolved (after 7 years?).  Sigh.
Bob Schor
Proven Zealot

The font issues are unfixable in LabVIEW 20xx series. LabVIEW NXG was specifically conceived to address these (and other UI) issues. "Real engineering" can happen in both platforms at this time. It is true that the vast majority of real engineering can only happen in LabVIEW 20xx, but the LabVIEW NXG platform supports enough functionality to be used for many real engineering projects already, and that number will increase over time as the platform develops.

Knight of NI

AQ:  Thanks for the Comment.  I must confess to having been a bit underwhelmed by the NXG push, as it seemed to be more "glitz" and less "substance", and I didn't appreciate that some issues (such as the one with Fonts) were basically unfixable in CurrentGen.  But I really should know better, as I have been known to tell some of my colleagues (after looking at their impressively huge Block Diagrams with Wires running all over the place) to "Start Over" (something I, myself, have done on at least two occasions, to very good final results) ...


Bob "Trying to Be Patient" Schor

Proven Zealot

Thanks for the patience. We wish it were otherwise, but the UI layers of LabVIEW 20xx were designed in the days of bitmaps and fixed-width fonts. There's a lot of layers of patching done to keep up with evolution, but at some point, it just has to be redone. That's what LV NXG is.

Active Participant
Status changed to: New

Re-opening because LabVIEW NXG has been discontinued.

Christina Rogers
Product Owner, LabVIEW R&D