how to change console font type and size ?

Polytropon freebsd at
Thu Feb 22 18:58:51 UTC 2018

On Thu, 22 Feb 2018 17:43:50 +0000 (UTC), Craig Block via freebsd-questions wrote:
> I had a lot of issue with console resolution as well.  Seems
> the vt driver was rushed out as a stop gap for KMS support
> missing that one important feature.

Yes, I think this is the main problem within vt today.

There is another limitation in vt: It cannot display special
characters when $TERM isn't UTF-8. For example, if it's set
to western Europe ISO-8859-1 (standard here in Germany), the
german umlauts ö ä ü Ö Ä Ü and the Eszett ß won't work. In
UTF-8 mode, they work (but note it's still a different
character - or characters, as UTF-9 uses 2 bytes for what
ISO-8859-1 only needs 1 byte).

> In my case I went back to using the sc driver since the nVidia
> driver I use does not depend on it (kern.vty=sc).

Interesting aspect! I did assume that _all_ X support
depends on KMS, which in turn depends on vt.

> Otherwise you're limited to running the console in vga mode
> (hw.vga.textmode=1) or running it in the native monitor
> resolution.

Exactly that is the most annoying thing: You cannot
set a "size in characters" (like 80x25 or 132x43),
it all depends on the native resolution (screen size
and amount of pixels) of your display. This becomes
even more complicated when you consider a CRT: It has
a physical size, but no pixels, so it could be anything
from 320x200 to 1400x1200.

I also tried hw.vga.textmode=1, but that didn't even work
(on FreeBSD 10).

> It leaves you with the option for giant vga mode font
> or tiny native resolution font.  Font selection is
> limited and personally I don't think any of them are
> any better than the stock vga font.

If I remember correctly, that stock font comes from the
GPU itself. This is the font you'll usually see when in
the CMOS setup or FreeBSD booting (80x25 default font).
I'd give further arms and legs to have _that_ font (or
an equivalent that looks the same) together with the
ability to run X.

> If there's one feature the vt team needs to get out
> there fast it's the ability to change console resolution.

In columns x lines, if possible. :-)

> P.S. sorry for the horrible format, the retarded web
> based email I'm using doesn't know how to replay to an
> email properly.

I tried to fix this a bit. :-)

Magdeburg, Germany
Happy FreeBSD user since 4.0
Andra moi ennepe, Mousa, ...

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