I need to create a custom display resolution for my install of lion because it doesn't have the size I must have for a project.

Is there a way to create a custom resolution set in lion osx 10.7?

  • 1
    Things like this are generally automatically determined by the display that is connected to your computer; Lion just gives you the options that the display supports. Jan 30, 2012 at 20:51
  • is there a way to spoof a display then? the reason i ask is because my situation involves a VM of lion and i need 1280 x 720
    – Kevin
    Jan 30, 2012 at 20:55
  • 1
    I believe that would be dictated by the VM itself, not the virtualized operating system. Jan 30, 2012 at 20:59
  • Christian, that sounds like the correct answer, so I suggest you post that as an answer (perhaps mentioning that the question should be directed at the VM vendor).
    – bneely
    Jan 31, 2012 at 1:25

2 Answers 2


I'm running OSX under VMWare, and as long as you don't run the VM in full screen, Display Preferences shows the screen size as the current window size, minus any host window borders.

With this you can resize the window manually to get close to the resolution you require.

The caveat to this is that you can't "set" the screen size to an exact amount, but with a bit of playing about you can get the resolution within a few pixels.

You will need a monitor with a larger resolution as the VM window does take away some pixels, so if your monitor is only 1280 wide, you will never get a full 1280 width with this method.


You could enable screen sharing, then connect via VNC to localhost/, and set a custom resolution in the client screen. This could be larger, or smaller than you native display, and may be set to different aspect ratios if that is what is required.

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