graphic says how to enable fractional scaling in fedora by omg linux

How to Enable Fractional Scaling on Fedora Linux

I run Fedora on a Chromebook that has a 3:2 ratio 2K screen, but the only scaling options I can use out-of-the-box are 100% or 200%.

And sadly neither is ideal.

Fedora defaults to 200 percent scaling on my display but although everything looks beautifully crisp it also looks far too large to be useful:

fedora 200 percent scaling
Fedora 38: 200% scale

However, if I switch to 100 percent scaling (at my resolution of 2256×1504) everything becomes much ᵗᵒᵒ ˢᵐᵃˡˡ:

fedora 100 percent scaling
Fedora 38: 100% scale

My scaling sweet spot is a value between those two, either 125 percent or 150 percent.

So how do I use those?

Well, like Fedora, Ubuntu also uses GNOME and Wayland and has fractional scaling values (including 125% and 150%) available. These interim values provide a properly proportioned experience on higher-resolution displays.

Fedora (or rather upstream GNOME) does not enable fractional scaling by default but we can enable fractional scaling (in Fedora 35 and above) through the command-line.

No, don’t be scared – it couldn’t be easier.

Unlock Fractional Scaling in Fedora

Open a new Terminal window and enter this command:

gsettings set org.gnome.mutter experimental-features "['scale-monitor-framebuffer']"

Hit enter and you’re done!

You’ll find 125%, 150%, and other fractional scaling values are now available to select from the Settings > Display panel (look for the drop down menu in the ‘scale’ section):

fedora fractional scaling values 150%
My ‘goldilocks’ scale

Alas, there is a downside.

Fractional scaling in GNOME is considered an experimental feature – there’s a reason it’s not available by default! Unlike Ubuntu (and distros based on it), the configuration of GNOME in Fedora lacks some out-of-branch optimizations that allow fractional scaling to function well.

Because of this, you should use this feature with the awareness that it may increase power usage. This could be an issue on laptops and other portable devices. it may also introduce screen tearing and/or other visual glitches.

If you notice performance issues after you enable fractional scaling on Fedora you should switch back to a round scale (100% or 200%) and disable it by running:

gsettings set org.gnome.mutter experimental-features "[]"

So far, in my testing, it works just as well on Fedora. I’m yet to notice any major slowdowns or performance impact from using it, and battery life seems consistent with Ubuntu on the same device — but your milage will, invariably, vary.

So that’s how to enable fractional scaling in Fedora (if you’re using the GNOME desktop and you’re aware of the potential issues that may occur from enabling it).

Do you have a high-resolution display that you’d like to be able to use fractional scaling (without issues) in Fedora on? Let me know how you manage things in the comments.