Global Options for the Front End

In the standard notebook front end, Mathematica allows you to set a large number of global options. The values of all these options are by default saved in a "preferences file", and are automatically reused when you run Mathematica again. These options include all the settings which can be made using the Preferences dialog.

style definitionsdefault style definitions to use for new notebooks
file locationsdirectories for finding notebooks and system files
data export optionshow to export data in various formats
character encoding optionshow to encode special characters
language optionswhat language to use for text
message optionshow to handle messages generated by Mathematica
dialog settingschoices made in dialog boxes
system configurationprivate options for specific computer systems

Some typical categories of global options for the front end.

You can access global front end options from the kernel by using Options[$FrontEnd, name]. But more often, you will want to access these options interactively using the Option Inspector in the front end.

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