I am familiar with inserting an ASCII character into a text document by using 'Alt+ASCII code' on the NumPad keys (e.g. Alt+130 inserts an é character).

Is there a similar way to insert a Unicode character via the keyboard using the unicode value given in Windows Character Map?

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  • 2
    See also "How do you type Unicode characters using hexadecimal codes?" at superuser.com/questions/13086/…
    – Arjan
    Sep 27, 2009 at 11:39
  • the proposed and flagged queston is better that question pointed by Arjan. The question come later but the good response come in here first. Perhaps because this question is better written. I find that the questions are different ! This question is better because the answer indicate that Windows must be rebooted !
    – schlebe
    Mar 18, 2018 at 19:17
  • the first two zeros are unnecessary for entering unicode
    – john
    Sep 15, 2020 at 22:54

10 Answers 10


According John D. Cook there are 3 ways:

  1. In Microsoft Word you can insert Unicode characters by typing the hex value of the character then typing Alt-x. You can also see the Unicode value of a character by placing the cursor immediately after the character and pressing Alt-x. This also works in applications that use the Windows rich edit control such as WordPad and Outlook.
  2. Another approach which works with more applications is as follows. First create a registry value under key HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Input Method of type REG_SZ called EnableHexNumpad, set its value to 1, and reboot. Then you can enter Unicode symbols by holding down the Alt key and typing the plus sign on the numeric keypad followed by the character value. When you release the Alt key, the symbol will appear. This approach worked with most applications I tried, including Firefox and Safari, but did not with Internet Explorer.
  3. Another option is to install the UnicodeInput utility. This worked with every application I tried, including Internet Explorer. Once installed, the window below pops up whenever you hold down the Alt key and type the plus sign on the numeric keypad. Type the numeric value of the character in the box, click the Send button, and the character will be inserted into the window that had focus when you clicked Alt-plus.

I would go for the second option because it integrates nicely with your current usage.

  • 14
    Option 2 works great, thanks. BTW, the location of the new string key was HKCU/Control Panel/Input Method/EnableHexNumpad
    – pelms
    Sep 27, 2009 at 9:08
  • Is option 2 supposed to work in Word (2013) and other rich edit controls? I could only make it work in Excel and non-MS apps such as Firefox and Notepad++ (on Windows 7).
    – Didier L
    Sep 14, 2016 at 8:47
  • 1
    Found Unicode Input Utility which is better than UnicodeInput, as it allows searching for symbols! Nov 23, 2018 at 13:03
  • 1
    The answer is confusing in the point 2: for the "Key" HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Input Method, a "Value" of type "String Value" (REG_SZ) must be created, with the name EnableHexNumpad and the value 1. Moreover, the "character value" must be the hexadecimal value of the Unicode character, made of digits from 0 to 9 (to be typed via the numeric keypad) and letters A to F. For instance, Alt + +20AC will type the Euro sign (€) Feb 20, 2020 at 17:29
  • @DidierL I would have hoped but it does not. I know the original question was for Win7 but at least on Win10 with Office 2019 it does not and for „“ the following is produced ╔╔. However, it works in Outlook To/CC/BCC/Subject field but not for the rich text field where I type the body, not even when I switch to “plain text” from HTML. Alt+X does not seem to work anymore and just jumps to the beginning of the word.
    – bugybunny
    Jun 8, 2020 at 12:07

If you're using Chrome or Safari, you can open up the console with Ctrl+Shift+I (or Cmd+Alt+I on Mac) and type copy('\uNNNN') – where the NNNN is the Unicode code after the +:

Right-to-Left Override U+202E copy('\u202e')

You can do that with Firefox, too, but you'll need Firebug.

Update (April 11, 2015): It works fine in Firefox's built-in console, too.

  • 1
    It doesn't seem to be working. Is my Google Chrome too new? I am using version 25. Typing copy('\u202e') and pressing Enter at Console prompt returns undefined. Could it be that they have changed it?
    – Samir
    Mar 16, 2013 at 23:32
  • 2
    @Sammy It works, the character gets copied to the clipboard, you can paste it afterwards.
    – leonbloy
    May 15, 2013 at 20:42
  • On newer versions of Chrome, you can also press F12 instead of Ctrl+Shift+I
    – radomaj
    Mar 12, 2014 at 9:36
  • Although you'll probably want to copy the character anyway, copy() is technically not necessary: 'There\'s no \u260E on the \u263E, but there may be a \u26C4.' "There's no ☎ on the ☾, but there may be a ⛄."
    – basic6
    May 1, 2014 at 13:12
  • 4
    Note, that this will not work for emoji out of the box. That’s because Javascript uses UTF-16 and splits the Unicode characters outside the Basic Multilingual Plane in twice. In this case you need the notation copy('\u{1F4A9}'). See this post for technical details.
    – Boldewyn
    Sep 25, 2015 at 11:43

On Windows hit WIN + R (run), type charmap and do search in UNICODE field. it actually do solve my problem, whereas ALT + code didn't help (link).

  • 1
    CharMap doesn't let you insert characters into an application.
    – Ian Boyd
    May 15, 2020 at 14:12

I will shamelessly plug a little tool I wrote for entering symbols in Windows as I find any solution usually presented too cumbersome for daily frequent use. My personal use case is typing the Swedish å for example on an international US keyboard without having to switch layouts.

It allows the entering of unicode characters through a popup window not dissimilar to how this works in Apple OS X.

See https://github.com/mjvh80/SymWin for details, it's free and open source, but must (currently) be built, if there is sufficient interest I could add a pre-built version.

The tool can be configured per key, e.g. by copy/pasting symbols once from a site such as http://copypastecharacter.com. It comes preconfigured with various symbols.


The easiest way: The Microsoft Keyboard Layout Creator. This is an official Microsoft solution. Functionality is similar like Ukelele for OS X.

Download and instructions: http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-GB/goglobal/bb964665.aspx

  • 1
    By "easiest", you must mean "easiest to use on an ongoing basis in which you're free to map keys to characters in whatever way you prefer", not "with the least amount of initial effort". I have used the Microsoft Keyboard Layout Creator, and while it works well, it's not for casual users.
    – Alan
    Jul 17, 2015 at 3:25

John D. Cook's solutions didn't work for me, as my employer has locked down the registry. I discovered that in Windows 7 and above, the Segoe UI Symbol font contains representations of most if not all of the Unicode characters in numeric order. If you can find a Unicode symbol meeting your needs (perhaps by browsing through the Unicode article in Wikipedia), note its Unicode number (hex value). Then, back in Word, choose Insert Symbol | More Symbols from the ribbon, select the Segoe UI Symbol font, and scroll through the screens looking for that hex value in the character code box.


If you're using Firefox, you can also install the Unicode Input Tool/Converter add-on.


Press and hold down the Alt key. Press the + (plus) key on the numeric keypad. Type the hexidecimal unicode value. Release the Alt key. Alas, this appears to require a registry setting. It is usually set but if needed, under HKEY_Current_User/Control Panel/Input Method, set EnableHexNumpad to "1". If you have to add it, set the type to be REG_SZ.

source: http://www.fileformat.info/tip/microsoft/enter_unicode.htm

  • 2
    This duplicates another answer and adds no new content. Please don't post an answer unless you actually have something new to contribute.
    – DavidPostill
    Oct 14, 2016 at 8:32

I was typing in Chinese (Traditional, Taiwan) in its default input method (Microsoft Bopomofo) and discovered this (tested on XP and Win10):

  1. Press ` key (grave accent, placed in the top left corner to the left of the 1 key).
  2. Press U key.
  3. Enter hex value.
  4. Press Enter.

You can also install Microsoft Bopomofo as a "Unicode IME".

  • I tried this on Windows 11, and it works fine. Just needed to install the "Chinese (Traditional, Taiwan) language pack, basic typing". No need to set any special registry settings. You can switch between keyboards with 'Windows Key + Space bar'.
    – nwsmith
    Dec 3, 2021 at 18:44

Firefox: While holding control+shift, enter u followed by the ordinal of the unicode character. That will insert it, without needing to install an addon.

  • What version/OS? This doesn't work for me with FF38.1 May 4, 2016 at 12:00
  • 2
    This is how Linux does it. Are you sure it is specific to Firefox?
    – Seth
    Feb 21, 2017 at 0:11

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