Zoom, font and display issues in SDL Trados Studio 2011/2014

zoom in Trados StudioOne feature that translators look for in SDL Trados Studio is the zoom button. You’re probably used to zooming in and out of Word documents and browsers using Ctrl+Scroll (mouse wheel) or by nipping down to the percentage bar at the bottom of your screen to adjust the zoom level  there, but neither of these methods work in Studio.

You’re not the only one to feel frustrated; we’ve all been there. So here are a few tips on how to solve some of the quirks of Studio’s display. (Black font applies to Studio 2009/2011; green font applies to Studio 2014.)

Signs & Symptoms

Where’s the zoom button in Studio 2011/2014?

No terms show up in the Term Recognition window!

Small font

Help! Tiny font in the Editor window!

My TM only shows 50 entries. Where are the rest?

I can’t see the end of the dialog box!

Diagnosis and Treatment

Zoom buttons and huge/tiny fonts: Don’t go on searching for a zoom button in Studio 2009/2011, because there isn’t one! Just go to Tools>Options>Editor>Font Adaptation, enable “Adapt font sizes” and define the font size you are comfortable with.

font adaptationIn Studio 2014 it’s much more intuitive. When you’re looking for a zoom button, you’ll naturally go to the View Tab and spot the font adaptation icons on the far right. Click on one of the icons to increase or decrease font size, or click the dialog box launcher (little arrow in the bottom right-hand corner, also known as “dinky”) to open up the full options for font adaptation.

This is the font Adaptation windows for all Studio versions:

Font adaptation
Don’t worry, changes you make here won’t affect the final target file. While you’re on the font settings page, make sure “Adapt text colors” is also enabled. Drag the contrast arrow along as far as you like (I set mine to maximum contrast). Next time you get a text in a very pale colour, you’ll actually be able to see what you’re translating.

formatting display style

Have you followed the above steps but fonts in the Editor window are still tiny or huge? Try changing the formatting display style. Go back to Options>Editor and on the right hand side, under Formatting Display Style, select “Show all tags but do not show formatting”.

Term recognition tab

Term recognition: If you’re not getting results from your termbase but you’ve got a red horizontal line marking the term in your source segment, check you’ve got the Term Recognition window visible. It’s probably just a question of toggling between the tabs at the bottom of the window.

Only 50 translation units (TUs) in the Translation Memories view: If you have opened your Translation Memory (TM) in the Translation Memories view (bottom left corner of the Home screen) but you can only see 50 translation units, try clicking the blue arrow to go to the next page of results (or use the shortcut Alt+right arrow key). The next 50 results should appear.

Next 50 TUs

To increase the number of TUs displayed per page, go to Tools>Options>Translation Memories View (File tab>Options>Translation Memories View) and change the number (200 is the maximum allowed). While you’re there, customise the font size of the TM view.

If these solutions don’t help, maybe you’ve actually got less than 50 TUs in your Translation Memory. To check how many there really are, go to Files>Settings (Home tab>Tasks group>Settings) to see the number that appears under “Translation Units”.

Cut-off dialog boxes: You may have problems with dialog box display in Studio if you have customised the text size in Windows (Control Panel>Appearance and personalization> Display>Make it easier to read what’s on your screen) and it is no longer set to 100% (default). This display issue can be solved by dragging the border of the Studio display box to the right or by using a scroll bar, if there is one. There is one dialog box that has a devastating effect if it is cut off. It comes under Translation Memory and Automated Translation settings. Your TM won’t be updated unless the very last box is enabled.

So if you’ve got problems saving your translated segments in your TM, check it out when you’re in the Editor Window by going to Project>Project Settings>Language Pairs>All Language Pairs>Translation Memory and Automated Translation. (Home tab in the Editor Window>Project Settings>Language Pairs>All Language Pairs>Translation Memory and Automated Translation.The “Update” box must be enabled at the end of the row that lists your TM.

August 2015. Edited to add:

The issue of cut-off dialog boxes remains in Studio 2014 and Studio 2015. SDL should really address these display issues, and make the program fully compatible with today’s high resolution screens and enlarged Windows text size.


I hope this short troubleshooting guide will help to solve some of the basic display issues you might come across in Studio. In a future post I’ll be looking at more advanced display features, focusing on how to get the most out of customising Studio’s views and windows. In the meantime, if you want to read more about display options and all things Trados, check out Mat Linder’s SDL Trados Studio Manual.


Image attribution: John “Pathfinder” Lester
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29 Responses to Zoom, font and display issues in SDL Trados Studio 2011/2014

  1. Anna Kuzminsky says:

    Great blog Emma!

  2. paulfilkin says:

    Excellent summary Emma… should be quoted quite a bit..!

  3. Pingback: Zoom, font and display issues in SDL Trados Studio 2011 | Signs ... | Machine translation | Scoop.it

  4. Céline says:

    You just saved my day, my segments in Studio were sooo tiny I just could’nt read them at all !!!
    Thanks for the tip 🙂

    • Glad to help, Céline!

      • MJ says:

        Hi Emma I need help creating a translation memory in TRADOSStudio 2011. Are we required to import files in order to create the TR memory and if so, what happens if the import wizard takes a long time to analize the data to translate the doc, desperate translator!!!!!!

        • Hi MJ, the usual workflow is to build up TMs as you translate new documents. If you have bilingual files (SDLXLIFF, TTX) you can import them. If you import a large TMX it can take a long time for Studio to read it. I suggest testing with a small file first, to see how it works.

  5. Jane says:

    Wow.. You’re an angel!!!

  6. Pingback: The intricacies of display in SDL Trados Studio 2011 | Signs & Symptoms of Translation

  7. Neil Ashby says:

    Sound advise Emma….I’ve just updated my laptop to a big shiny desktop. Bought a second licence for Trados 2011….but all of the icons and Interface text, text boxes, Project setup window, etc. etc (I can change the Translation text size in Editor, no problems there) are tiny. I’m using the same monitor as I had connected to my laptop, but things are definitely small than before (I can now fit 4 toolbars where before only fitted 2!!).
    Any advice?

    • Hi Neil,
      A big shiny desktop… lucky you. New machines are great: not just improved specs but less junk installed that slows them down.
      AFAIK, you can’t adjust the interface fonts in Studio. I made them bigger by changing Windows font size to 110% (Control Panel>Appearance and personalization> Display>Make it easier to read what’s on your screen) but of course that affects all your programs.
      If you’re using the same monitor but a different machine, it might be worth trying a different resolution (Control Panel>Appearance and personalization> Adjust screen resolution).
      Adjustable interface text size would be a great idea for the SDL ideas page at http://ideas.sdl.com/ Why don’t you add it? I’d definitely vote for it!

      • Neil Ashby says:

        Thanks again Emma,

        I got there in the end with changing the text and icons size in Windows and they seem to be a bit bigger in Trados now as well…the problem was/is that the new Windows 8 have decided to move things around so everything is harder to find than before….when I find the time I’ll shuffle on down to the SDl ideas page, give me half an hour and I can probably give them 10 or 20 ideas to play with….
        Thanks again for the help and advise,

  8. You’re welcome, Neil!

  9. Sugeng says:

    Thanks a lot, Emma.

  10. Pingback: SDL Trados Studio TM isn’t updating! My translation memory is empty! | Signs & Symptoms of Translation

  11. Kathy says:

    Once again Emma, you have helped me with a problem. Your explanations are so easy to understand and follow. THANK YOU!!!!

  12. Spencer says:

    Thank you for the info about the Transaltion Memory. Is there a way to see all transaltion units?

    • Yes, you can open a Translation Memory in the Translation Memories window (click the button in the bottom left hand corner of the home screen). You can see up to 200 units at a time like that.
      Hope that helps,

  13. ramsyahf says:

    I spent a half day to solve the zoom issue until I found this workaround. Thanks a million, Emma!

  14. Ndondji says:

    How do I have my target text window under the source text window in Trados 2011 as I have it in Tageditor instead of having them side by side?
    Is it possible at all?

    • Hi Ndondji. Studio 2011 – and Studio 2014 that is just round the corner – do not have the option to display source/target vertically. I think reviewing/proofreading would be more efficient with one above the other, although for translating I prefer side by side. I agree, it would be nice to be able to choose.

  15. Anne-Lise says:

    Thank youuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu for the font size adapting trick!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
    My eyes and neck feel so much better.
    Muchissimas gracias.

  16. ICL says:

    Fantastic explanation! And I like your sense of humor for titling and explaining things (with medical terms). Congrats for a great blog! 🙂

  17. Perfectly explained, Emma. It helped me a lot!

  18. Plume says:

    Very useful post, thanks a lot Emma.

  19. Martin Otto says:

    Just read this and it helped!

  20. Hi everyone,

    Comments on this post are now closed. If you need help with Studio issues, I recommend the Studio User Community (use your SDL credentials to sign up), the Studio User group on Yahoo Groups or the SDL Trados support forum on ProZ.

    If you’d like my advice about solving specific Studio issues or personal guidance as you start out with Studio, please click the contact tab above to arrange a consultancy session.


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