Scaling in LibreOffice Calc

I’m kinda embarrassed to ask this, but it is for a friend…

Is anyone still using LibreOffice in the current year? BTW, I’m asking for a friend. It’s not me using LibreOffice, definitely not me… :sweat_smile:

So, when I open a spreadsheet in Calc, it looks like this on my 1440p monitor:

This is with the default settings (as far as I know, haven’t used this program before), with the default font size, and zoom level (if you can see in the bottom right corner) set to 100%.

This is clearly too tiny. It would maybe be understandable on some crazy high DPI screen, but this is 1440p. So something is not right.

So what my friend wants to know: how do I make it look bigger?

And by this, my friend doesn’t mean “how do I zoom in?” or “how do I choose a bigger font?” or “how do I modify the document to make it bigger?”, but how to make it display properly, without modifying the document.

Looking it up online, I see something about adjusting some scaling factor (setting “Scaling” in Tools > Options > LibreOffice > View), but I can’t find an option like that anywhere.

My friend says thanks!

EDIT: here is a better explanation of the problem:

I’m assuming the good old ctrl + mousewheel is not what your friend is looking for?
I.e. the UI elements should also be scaled?

You could change the icon size to Extra Large in the settings

That actually looks normal to me for libre office.

No, that actually modifies the document (if I save it, at least), because zoom is remembered per document basis. Also, it only goes as far as 400%, which is barely enough.

Yeah, but that doesn’t do anything about the spreadsheet looking so tiny.

You can change the icon sizes in options I believe.

Your friend is a mole? :thinking:

I’m sorry, I seem to be getting misunderstood by many people, so obviously, I didn’t explain it well enough.

On my 1440p monitor, there are 70 rows and 29 columns of spreadsheet visible, at zoom level 100% and with the font size 10pt.

This is too tiny. It looks as if the zoom level is set to 20% or something small like that. But this is at 100%. So in order to see anything, I need to zoom in, to something absurd like 300% (400% is the limit!). And then, when I save the document, it remembers this zoom level. So when I send it to my friend, who uses a laptop with a smaller screen, he is going to see only the A1 cell and nothing else, because it’s going to be zoomed in so much… :rofl:

So zoom doesn’t seem to be an issue here, this is some high DPI problem.

I see. That’s a problem indeed. According to a quick google search and this link, there is no built in way to scale the UI, other than increasing the icon size and then use the zoom slider…

Also you might find this link useful, apparently there was something along those lines in LibreOffice at some point:

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Okay, so it’s not a problem with me, but LibreOffice sucks in general for everyone with a screen resolution higher than 640×480.

Thanks for confirming that. :slight_smile:

I’ll tell my friend to use LATEX, like a normal person, and stop wasting his time on this nonsense.


Are you using the QT ui or the GTK ui?
Try e.g. env SAL_USE_VCLPLUGIN=qt5 QT_SCALE_FACTOR=2 libreoffice or env SAL_USE_VCLPLUGIN=gtk3 GDK_SCALE=2 libreoffice.

Edit: or just try env SAL_FORCEDPI=200 libreoffice

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Yeah, that works, but now the menus are HUGE, they don’t fit on the screen.

I can reduce the size of icons, but every other GUI element is twice as big, as is to be expected…

Here it is next to Kate, for comedic effect:


I guess that’s the best it’s going to get. I’ll wait a bit longer before I mark this as a solution, maybe someone else has an idea.

So your goal is to have the font in the spreadsheet significantly larger than the menu font and other ui elements? Since it looks like in your screenshot they are currently at similar scales. Is the font in Kate also 10pt?

Kate is a text editor, so whatever font I set in it is not a property of the document, but a setting of the program. It’s 24pt, by the way.

I could increase the font size in the spreadsheet, but that would modify the document, which is not what I’m trying to achieve.

If you’re not attached to spreadsheet operations, you could increase the font size and save in a format like csv that doesn’t store font size.
Alternatively, if they’re using libreoffice too, you can both turn off Options → Load/Save → General → Load user-specific settings with the Document so you don’t load each other’s zoom settings. I think some other file formats also don’t save zoom settings (certainly something like csv, maybe others like xlsx or dif).

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Saving it in a different format definitely constitutes modifying the document :rofl:

env SAL_USE_VCLPLUGIN=gtk3 GDK_SCALE=1 SAL_FORCEDPI=300 libreoffice looks like it scales the font but not the ui. GDK_SCALE controls the ui scale here, while SAL_FORCEDPI scales the content. You get a similar effect with slightly different things scaled using env SAL_USE_VCLPLUGIN=qt5 QT_SCALE_FACTOR=1 SAL_FORCEDPI=300 libreoffice.

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Did you try fractional scaling? Something like 1.25 instead of 2, where the menu was too large?