I've just installed OS X Lion, and found that the default fonts (Menlo and Monaco) are quote uncomfortable for Shell prompts and the Eclipse IDE.

Is there a good, general-purpose fixed width font for developing under Mac OS X?

4 Answers 4


My personal favorites are the Bitstream Vera Sans Mono derivates like Menlo and DejaVu Sans Mono:

Espresso Mono doesn't have an italic face, Mensch doesn't have bold or italic faces.

Cousine and Liberation Mono are basically the same font designed by Steve Matteson. The shapes of all ASCII characters are currently identical, but Cousine was released with the Open Font License (instead of GPL v.2) for Google Web Fonts. They are metrically compatible with Courier New, but appear more like more angular versions of the Vera Sans Mono fonts. Liberation Mono currently has more glyphs (674) than Cousine (216) though.

Droid Sans Mono is another font designed by Steve Matteson. It currently has glyphs for 898 characters, but no bold or italic faces. The default line height and character width are both larger than in most monospace fonts.

Inconsolata is a monospace font with humanist features. It has slanted edges and more width variation than most monospace fonts.

PT Mono is part of the same family as PT Sans. It's lighter than most monospace fonts, and has many unique details at the ends of strokes.

Source Code Pro is a new open source font by Adobe. It has a low x-height, large line spacing, and wide slabs on the lowercase i, l, and t. It also has a two story lowercase g like Inconsolata.

If you think text looks too heavy on OS X, there's a hidden preference for selecting a lighter text rendering style.


The perfect font for terminal is 9x15 fixed font that distributed with X11 in every Linux systems. You can download adapted version for Mac OS here:


Just be sure to put the correct size, i.e. for 9x15 font is 15pt, 10x20 is 20pt and so on. Also, uncheck "Antialias text" in terminal settings to display bold text correctly.

9x15 15pt looks like this:

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Comparing to Monaco 14 pt:

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Comparing to Anonymous Pro 16pt:

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I prefer Anonymous Pro at 16pt w/ anti-aliasing on in iTerm2.

There are also:

  • Dina
  • Envy Code R
  • Inconsolata
  • monofur
  • PragmataPro
  • ProggyOpti
  • Terminus

All that said, this question is asked all the time on Stack Overflow, and all roads lead back to this post:



I like PT Mono. The other fonts mentioned above also also OK, e.g. Menlo.


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