SEARCH

How-To Geek

How to Use and Tweak Reader Mode in Safari

Would you like to make online articles easier to read without having to deal with scrolling back and forth or skipping between multiple pages?  Here’s how you can turn your browser into a book with Safari Reader.

Using the new Reader Mode in Safari

Safari 5 has added many features that make it a nicer browser, one of which being the new Reader Mode.  When you’re reading an article online, you’ll see a new Reader button in the top right corner of your address bar.

sshot-2010-08-09-[1]

Here’s a close-up of the button.  It’ll appear gray before you click it.

image

This will open the article in a nice viewer overlay that makes the article look like it would on print.  The Reader pane hovers over the article, and swooshes in with a nice visual touch when it opens.

image

You’ll still see any images in the article inline as normal, and can print, email, or zoom in and out of an article from the small toolbar that appears when you hover over the bottom of the Reader pane.

image

If you’re reading a long article that’s split into multiple pages, Safari Reader will automatically load them so you can read the article seamlessly.  This doesn’t work on all sites, but it’s a nice feature when it does.

image

To go back to your main page, press the Esc key on your keyboard, the X in the Reader popup toolbar, or click the Reader button in the address bar again to close it.

image

Tweak Your Safari Reader

Safari Reader is a great feature, but there are ways to make it better.  Creative designers have added fonts and extra features to Reader, so let’s see how to add a customization to Safari Reader.

Find a Reader design you’d like to use, such as the Antique theme (link below), and download it to your computer.

image

This theme was saved as a zip file, so extract the file first so you can add it to Safari.

image

Now, you need to backup your original Safari Reader theme.  Exit Safari, and then in Windows, browse to the following folder; if you’re using a 32 bit edition of Windows, switch Program Files (x86) to simply Program Files.

C:\Program Files (x86)\Safari\Safari.resources

Scroll down to the Reader.html file, and change it’s name to something else, such as Reader_old.

image

Since Program files is a protected folder, you’ll need to approve the file rename.

image

Now, copy the new Reader file you downloaded, and paste it into the Safari.resources folder.  Again, approve the file transfer as before.

image

Now when you use Safari Reader, you’ll see the new design.  The Antique theme gives you a aged paper look with a very nice fonts from the new Google Fonts API.  It even adds more tools to the bottom popup toolbar, including a Send to Evernote button.

image

If you ever decide you want to switch back to your original Reader theme, just delete your new Reader.html file and switch your original Reader file back to its original name.

Conclusion

For more ways to make Safari useful, check out how to Add Extensions to Safari in One Click and Import Your Firefox Bookmarks into Safari.

Links

Download Safari

Info About Safari Reader

Download the Antique theme for Safari Reader

Matthew digs up tasty bytes about Windows, Virtualization, and the cloud, and serves them up for all to enjoy!

  • Published 08/13/10

Get Free Articles in Your Inbox!

Join 134,000 newsletter readers

Email:

Go check your email!