Recently I re-installed Windows XP English, and after setting the locale to Japanese, and installing my favorite fonts, all Japanese text in the GUI became strange. The GUI font is Tahoma (default).

In the past it would render foreign scripts with Windows' own fonts, but now, for some reason, it's using one of my own installed fonts, and a bad one at that! (the font I call Kiddie in this screenshot)


I deleted this font, and then windows took one of the very unreadable semi-cursive fonts. I re-installed the Kiddy font and windows immediately used that again (all without rebooting)

Does anyone know how to change/alter/configure the windows font fallback strategy? I don't care if it takes third-party software.

1 Answer 1


http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/goglobal/bb688134.aspx explains some of the options, but they're based on the implementation details of whatever application you're using.

Excerpted from the link:

Font fallback is handled automatically by Microsoft's Uniscribe engine

Font linking: Unlike font fallback, in which the selected font is internally replaced by a predefined font, in font linking it is possible to link one or more fonts (called "linked fonts") to another font (called the "base font"). Once you link fonts, you can use the base font to display code points that do not exist in the base font, but that do exist in one of the linked fonts. For example, linking a hangul font and a Japanese font to a Tahoma font allows you to display both Korean and Japanese characters in Tahoma font.

Note: Font linking can only add glyphs to a base font; you cannot override or replace glyphs in the base font.

If font linking is enabled on your device, you can examine the registry by enumerating the subkeys of the registry key at HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE–\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\FontLink\SystemLink to determine the mappings of linked fonts to base fonts. You can add links by using Regedit to create additional subkeys. Once you have located the registry key that has just been mentioned, from the Edit menu, Highlight the font face name of the font you want to link to and then from the Edit menu, click Modify. On a new line in the dialog field "Value data" of the Edit Multi-String dialog box, enter the path and file name to link to, and face name of the font. Use coma to separate the font file name and font face name. Example Image

  • 4
    Mind expanding the link? Link only answers may be deleted.
    – soandos
    Jul 15, 2012 at 18:21
  • 1
    Whilst this may theoretically answer the question, it would be preferable to include the essential parts of the answer here, and provide the link for reference. Jul 16, 2012 at 3:11

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