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On some browsers, they show the website more expanded, removing the white space on the sides of the page. This has the effect of making everything seem more cluttered and bigger.

Is there something in my code that means they do this?

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Can you be more specific, what browsers, are they Desktop versions, Mobile versions? –  Nate Apr 14 '11 at 20:20
    
Is it a "zoom" in that text and images get better too, or is it just CSS that is causing the layout to grow to fill the sides? –  Mufasa Jun 24 '11 at 16:47
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3 Answers

A lot of browsers persistently remember sites that you've zoomed into before.

You might want to check that it's not a local setting that is 'expanding' your particular website and cropping the white space.

CTRL and zero will reset the zoom in Firefox, Chrome and IE.

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You can try setting a fixed width to the body of the site. This will prevent browsers from adjusting the width to fit the viewport. However it means you may end up with horizontal scrollbars if the user's viewport is smaller than your site's width.

The CSS would look something like:

body {
  width:920px;
}

You could also try a min-width (supported in some browsers). This could be smaller than the (arbitrarily) 920px I've used in the example, but could be large enough that your site doesn't "squish". Ex.

body {
  min-width:600px;
}
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A fluid CSS design would work better, with body { width: auto; margin: 0; } –  Mufasa Jun 24 '11 at 16:46
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Are you asking about a specific website, websites in general or browsers?

I've never heard of any browser that zooms in automatically other than the iOS version of Safari.

I've also never heard of client side website code that intentionally causes the browser to zoom in. If it exists, I'm not sure why you'd do that. Typically if you want bigger text, you just specify a larger font size in the CSS. If you want no white-space on the sides, you create a design without white-space that expands/contracts with the window.

Some people like using the zoom feature of their browser... on some browsers it simply makes the text bigger, on other browsers it actually zooms in. Sometimes, the browser's zoom feature breaks the original design.

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