Keybase, font sizes, and screen resolution.

14 August 2017

Some time ago I wrote an article about what Keybase is and what it's good for.  I also mentioned one of my pet peeves, which is that, by default the fonts used by the Keybase desktop client are way, way too small to see easily on Windbringer.  A couple of days ago somebody finally figured out how to blow up the fonts on the desktop, so I can finally see what's going on without putting my nose on the display (and making the mouse cursor jump around because Windbringer has a touchscreen).  While I wish that this would be a configuration option in the GUI (or, hell, even a config file) I'll take what I can get.  First, some background so everything makes sense...

When you start up Keybase on the Linux desktop it automatically drops the file ~/.config/autostart/keybase_autostart.desktop into your home directory.  This file is used by just about every desktop for Linux to start Keybase when you log in; it does this with the command Exec=env KEYBASE_START_UI=hideWindow run_keybase

run_keybase is a shell script that gets installed when Keybase is and does the heavy lifting of starting all of Keybase's functional modules ("clean everything up if you restart Keybase," back-end daemon, kbfsfuse, and the Keybase desktop application itself, which tends to park itself in the system tray).  What I did was make a copy of the run_keybase script into my personal ~/bin directory, where I put shell scripts and weird one-off stuff that I use from time to time.  I edited that copy of the file to reflect the minor command change to alter the font size.  After a few experiments, this is what it looks like now:

/opt/keybase/Keybase --force-device-scale-factor=2.5 &>> "$logdir/" &

I then edited the .config/autostart/keybase_autostart.desktop file to call my edited run_keybase script:

Exec=env KEYBASE_START_UI=hideWindow /home/drwho/bin/run_keybase

After logging out and back in, I was pleasantly surprised to find that I could read the Keybase GUI easily.

If you don't want to make the edits on your own and just want files to drop into place, here they are.  Just rename them appropriately:

Thank you, @shyiko.