The cursor (pointer? what’s the difference?) on my Windows 8 system is too darn small and I can’t find it much of the time. Is there a way to make it bigger or enlarge the cursor?
Actually, I think “cursor” and “pointer” are interchangeable on a modern computer system because the object on the screen that shows the current cursor location changes depending on context. Sometimes it’s a hand, sometimes an arrow, sometimes an “I” bar when you’re going to insert text in a word processor. Probably back at Redmond there’s some official definition that clearly differentiates the two, but really, let’s just look at what you can do in Windows 8 — Win8 for short — and how to do it.
The fastest way to get to the right place in Windows8 is to use the search feature, because quite frankly it’s a pain now to navigate through the Control Panels area otherwise.
The problem is that in an attempt to be smart, the Search feature in Win8 has different categories of results and by default it’s “Files” which doesn’t include any of the Control Panels in the OS. D’oh.
Here’s what I mean…
Let’s start by using the Command-S keystroke to bring up the search charm on the Charms bar. If you prefer, just swipe in from the right side of the screen, it’ll bring this up too. Search for “pointer”:
Nothing. No results.
Oh, because it’s looking at “Files”! Click on Files to change it:
Ah, so many options!
Choose “Everywhere” and suddenly all sorts of useful matches appear:
That’s what we want. In fact, the first match is what we seek, and it’s nicely labeled as “Change the mouse pointer size”.
Ah, so that’s under “Ease of Access”. Don’t think I would ever have found it without that handy search feature. Score 1 for Windows 8!
At this point you can change the size of the pointer (arrow, cursor, whatever you want to call it) and the color.
Let’s pop over to the “Other options” menu under Ease of Access instead, however (not shown in the pic above, it’d be just below “Mouse” on the left side) because that’s where you can change the insertion pointer:
So you can change your cursor thickness — I recommend 2px or 3px — to make it a bit more visible too. Handy.
Now, back to “Mouse” and a quick demonstration on the difference of changing the cursor (arrow) size.
Here’s the default size:
And a click on the largest of the sizes shows the difference:
Quite a difference!
Between these different settings, give ‘em a whirl and see if you can find Windows 8 (or Win8.1) a bit easier to use. Good luck!
Looking for more Windows 8 help? Oh, we have tons and tons of Microsoft Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 help and tutorials here.