While Microsoft already ships a decent font set with Windows 10 that Office apps also use, there may come a time in your life when they may not be enough, and you may feel the need to install a custom font downloaded from the internet. Such a moment happened recently in my professional life when a customer wanted my team to develop a dashboard in Microsoft Power BI using a custom font. Although we thought there would be a simple solution to this requirement, we learned that we would need to specify the font in a JSON theme file, but this would only work if said font is installed on your Windows machine.
Much to our disappointment, we learned that the font the customer wants us to use is not available in Windows 10, which means we need to install it first. Fortunately, the process of installing new fonts on Windows 10 is easier than you might expect, and today I’m going to walk you through what you need to do to activate the same, if you ever face a similar requirement – or if you just want to try new fonts. This approach will also work for apps installed on Windows 10, like Microsoft Office.
Step 1: Download a custom font
First of all, you obviously need to download the custom font to your machine. There are several ways to do this. Starting with the built-in options on Windows 10, you need to head to Settings> Personalization> Fonts and click “Get more fonts from the Microsoft Store” as shown in the screenshot above.
This will open a dedicated section in the Microsoft Store listing some custom fonts. Choose any font you like and click the “Get” button in the store listing. For the sake of this guide, I clicked on the “Ink Journal” font, as can be seen above.
Once the font is installed, it will be visible in Office apps from the font drop-down menu. As you can see in the screenshot above, I have selected the “Ink Journal” font that I just installed and can use it without any issues.
But wait, what if a font you want isn’t available in the Microsoft Store? This is a very valid scenario considering that the Microsoft Store only has a few dozen custom fonts, and it is very likely that if you are looking for a specific obscure font it will not be there. Or maybe you just like the fonts available out there.
In this case, we would like to download something from the web. The good news is, it’s pretty straightforward too. The supported font file format types in Windows 10 are .ttf and .otf, which stand for TrueType and OpenType, respectively. If you want to know the difference between them, there are several guides available on the web that tell you exactly that, however, that is outside the scope of this article.
In our case, we are only interested in downloading .ttf or .otf font files and installing them on Windows 10. Fortunately, there are many dedicated websites that offer just that, such as Police SquirreEarth DaFont, among others. Most downloads will contain a .zip file that you will need to extract using WinRar, 7Zip, or some other compression tool. In our case, I downloaded “Cassandra”, just because it looks classy, ââsue me. As you can see in the screenshot above, there is a font file named “CassandraPersonalUseRegular-3BjG.ttf”, which I will install in the next step. This concludes our first step in terms of your options for downloading fonts not available on the Microsoft Store. For the sake of simplicity and brevity, I will refer to the font you downloaded as the “.ttf file” in later parts of this guide.
Step 2: Install a custom font
Now that you’ve downloaded a .ttf file from the web, your next step is to install it on your computer. There are several ways to do this, but you may need administrative privileges on your operating system because the fonts on Windows 10 are installed in the C: Windows Fonts default directory.
One way to install the custom font would be to reopen the Settings> Personalization> Fonts setup in Windows 10, and at the top you will notice an option called “Drag and drop to install”. Do exactly that with the .ttf file you downloaded, and that’s it. After that, it will also be visible in the list of fonts on the same page. A screenshot of this option is attached above.
Another way to install a font is through the context menu. Simply right click on your .ttf file which will open the context menu containing two options called “Install” and “Install for all users”. The first will install it only for the current user, the second will install it for all users and should be taken into account if you are using a shared machine. Click on any of these options based on your preference as shown in the screenshot above, and you’re done.
Another option to accomplish the same as the two alternatives described above in this step is to simply double click on the .ttf file which will automatically open it in a dedicated editor. Click on the “Install” option at the top, and that’s about it.
Once you are done with any of the options explained in the step above, the font will be visible in the list on the Settings> Personalization> Fonts page as well as the C: Windows Fonts phone book. A screenshot of the first is above. You can copy and paste the font file into the C: Windows Fonts directory directly and while this may be the fastest option, it is not the most user-friendly if you are not familiar with the Windows directory structure.
Step 3 (optional): Uninstall a custom font
If you’ve read this article just to learn how to install a custom font, you don’t need to read any further. Having said that, one day you may want to uninstall a custom font just to clear the bloat from your computer as well as the options available in Office apps on Windows 10.
In this case, simply go to the same Settings> Personalization> Fonts page, locate the font you want to uninstall and click on it. This will open up a dedicated font page, where you will see a button called “Uninstall” as shown in the screenshot above. Click on it and the font will be uninstalled. This also concludes our guide!
Did you find this guide useful? Have you ever come across this use case? What other tutorials would you like to see soon on Neowin? Sound off in the comments section below!