Archives For November 30, 1999

Looking for a desktop magnifier? Besides enabling the built-in screen magnifier, there are a few third-party applications can do the job.

Magnus is a very simple desktop magnifier written in Python 3. It shows the area around the mouse pointer in a separate window magnified two, three, four, or five times. Useful for users who need magnification, whether to help with eyesight or for accurate graphical design or detail work.

How to Install Magnus in Ubuntu:

Magnus is available as Snap package, it can be directly installed from Ubuntu Software.

For Ubuntu 20.04 and higher, the software is also available in the main apt repository. Simple open terminal (Ctrl+Alt+T) and run command to install it:

sudo apt install magnus

For Ubuntu 18.04, you need to add the PPA repository by running command:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:flexiondotorg/magnus && sudo apt update

Then run the previous apt install command to install it.

Once installed, launch magnus from system application launcher and enjoy!

Uninstall Magnus:

To remove the software PPA if added, run command in terminal:

sudo add-apt-repository --remove ppa:flexiondotorg/magnus

To remove Magnus, simply run command:

sudo apt remove magnus

gnome shell

The default Gnome desktop has a built-in desktop magnifier. This quick tutorial will show you how to enable this feature in Ubuntu 18.04 and higher.

First of all, install dconf editor from Ubuntu Software utility if you don’t have it.

To enable screen magnifier in Ubuntu:

Open Dconf Editor, then navigate to org/gnome/desktop/a11y/applications.

There turn on the toggle for “screen-magnifier-enabled”.

To change screen magnifier preferences:

I don’t like the default magnified view which fills entire screen. Fortunately, there are options to change the maginifier preferences.

Also in Dconf Editor, navigate to org/gnome/desktop/a11y/magnifier, there are many preference options including:

  • lens-mode: move the magnified view with the mouse pointer.
  • screen-position: screen position of magnified view, left-half, right-half, top-half, bottom-half, or full-screen.
  • mag-factor: magnification factor, minimum = 0.1, maximum = 32.
  • mouse-tracking: determine the position of the magnified mouse image within the magnified view, and how it reacts to system mouse movement.

There are also options to enable crosshairs, inverse lightness, scroll beyond the edges of desktop, etc.