Resize windows with fixed sizes

Martin Brinkmann
Jun 18, 2012
Updated • Jun 18, 2012
Software, Windows, Windows software

While it is usually possible to resize windows in the Windows operating system, some windows on the system block any resizing attempt. This is for instance true for the properties window that you get when your right-click a file and select that option from the context menu. If you have ever tried to append parameters to the target field there, you know that it usually is not wide enough to display the path and parameter at the same time.

You probably know of other windows that do not let you resize them that you wish they would. Examples that I can provide are the Environment Variables window of the Control Panel, the Firefox preferences, or the Internet Options in Microsoft's Internet Explorer.

There is a second issue that some Windows users may experience. When you change the default system font size to a larger font, you may notice that some windows are not displayed properly anymore because of the increase in font size. That's usually not a problem if you can resize the window to fit the contents once again on the screen, but for windows that can't be resized, it can go as far as render the program unusable.

Resize windows with fixed sizes

Resize Enable is a lightweight portable program for Windows that you can use to resize nearly every window in the operating system. It works with the majority of system windows that use a fixed size, including all examples provided above. All you need to do to use the program is to run it first, and then move the mouse cursor to the window border. From here, you use the normal control options to resize the window (meaning holding down the left mouse button and dragging into a direction to decrease or increase the window size.

The author notes that while his program will work most of the time, there may be some windows where it won't function properly.

The one issue that I encountered while using it, besides short lags before window contents were refreshed, was that changes were not saved. When you close the resized window and open it again, it is displayed in its original size on the screen.

Closing Words

Its portable nature makes Resize Enable a useful program to have, especially if you have to work with a program that you wish you could resize.


Tutorials & Tips

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  1. mostafa said on October 31, 2020 at 5:51 pm

    it does not work! at least on my win10.

  2. alex said on February 27, 2020 at 11:24 am

    damn! Good Software

  3. Tim Douglas said on November 22, 2018 at 7:49 am

    Great little tool – thanks!
    In relation to your comment above “When you close the resized window and open it again, it is displayed in its original size on the screen.”
    Used in conjuction with Hot Keyboard Pro macro program, you can set on window pop-up (i.e. activated) to re-size to the size of your choice. (Only good if you always want it in same size and position – but if you don’t you can set a hot-key instead of automatic) I’ve use it on pop-up for a toolbox that was always ‘wrong’

  4. SullyPanda said on November 20, 2017 at 2:12 am

    almost 6 years later.. it still is a great tip! (worked on W7)

  5. bullocks said on August 1, 2012 at 1:54 am

    cool! then, how to resize windows keeping the same aspect ratio? i know this is possible in MacOS…

  6. Q said on June 18, 2012 at 6:44 pm

    My Firefox preferences window is resizable. To resize the Firefox preferences dialog box I am able to use “Size” or “Maximize” from the Control Box menu to resize the dialog box.

    I tried tis on Windows XP Professional with Service Pack 2.

  7. Tom C. said on June 18, 2012 at 11:26 am

    Reading the title I thougt the article is about resizing (virtual) Windows OS installations :-)
    I hate monday morning misunderstandings …

    1. Martin Brinkmann said on June 18, 2012 at 11:54 am

      I have removed the capital W to make it clearer.

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