Today Google updated the stable version of their Chrome browser to version 37.0.2062.94 on Windows, OS X, and Linux. This is a highly anticipated release for users on Windows specifically, as it marks the move from Microsoft's Graphics Device Interface rendering method to Microsoft's DirectWrite text rendering API. Using GDI resulted in significantly worse text rendering in Chrome compared to other browsers like Internet Explorer and Mozilla Firefox. The issue was also non-existent on Google's versions of Chrome for OS X and Linux which use font renderers native to their own operating systems. Switching to DirectWrite has been requested for years by users on Windows, and Google has stated that it took significant rewriting of their font rendering engine which is why it has taken so long.

The issue was more pronounced in some areas than others. Below we have a screenshot of a section of my own website which has always had significant issues with font rendering in Chrome. Somewhat funny is the fact that the fonts used are sourced from Google fonts.

Chrome 36 on the left, Chrome 37 on the right

The aliasing in the font rendered on Chrome 36 is quite apparent. Some letters even have entire areas that appear to be chopped off, like the top and bottom of the letter 'O'. On Chrome 37 the rendering is significantly improved. There's far less aliasing on fonts, no missing chunks from letters, and even the double down arrow glyph inside the circle looks much sharper.

While Google didn't detail it in their changelog, Chrome 37 also includes the new password manager interface that existed on the beta for Chrome 37. When on the login page for a website, a key will appear in the search bar with a list of all saved passwords for that website. This also replaces the bar that would appear at the top asking to save a username and password after entering it for the first time.

Google's changelog also states that Chrome 37 has a number of new APIs for apps and extensions, as well as many under the hood changes for improved performance and stability. There are also 50 security fixes, with the most interesting or significant fixes detailed in the source below.

Source: Google Chrome Blog

Comments Locked


View All Comments

  • hechacker1 - Wednesday, August 27, 2014 - link

    I didn't realize it, but at home with a 1440p display and using Chrome Remote Desktop, after update 37 it became clear and sharp. Before it was always slightly blurry, and it may have been due to my default zoom of 110%. Perhaps this was the fix, or they just fixed Remote Desktop. I really didn't notice a change in web text, but then I use OS-X, Linux, and Windows daily, so I'm used to the variation.
  • sdmarathe - Wednesday, August 27, 2014 - link

    everyone - please go to teh chrome bug page and voice frustrations with this chrome 37 directwrite madness. they broke a perfectly good GDI render with this directwrite madness. more noise there - better it would be to get it fixed. right now they won't even acknowledge the problem. go to bug
  • erple2 - Saturday, August 30, 2014 - link

    Unless you can contribute something to help fix the problem, vitriol that some people post there makes it harder to find the useful comments to help fix the problem. Don't post unless you have something helpful to contribute. It won't help.
  • troublesniffer - Thursday, August 28, 2014 - link

    I am extremely disappointed with this new update. I so prefer Chrome to IE because it is much faster, the resolution appearance is truly disgusting. Everything is so much larger, even with reduction in font size and zoom. I am using 90% zoom and fonts and websites are enormously distorted and 75% makes it almost impossibly small. I also play a game on facebook and with this update the game's appearance is truly disgusting- and it was great until the update. Are these things going to be fixed in the next update?
  • troublesniffer - Thursday, August 28, 2014 - link

    THANK YOU for the fix disabling the Direct Write feature. Now everything is back to normal and I can play my game once again. I am very pleased with the fix that was offered. I added one step in advanced settings and changed the page view to 100% and all is right in the world again! Yippee

Log in

Don't have an account? Sign up now