# Windows – Font oddity – is this a bug

fontstrue-type-fontswindowswindows 7

I have Windows 7 Ultimate Home Edition, installed some new fonts recently (I do graphic design etc.) and have noticed some of them don't display in Windows/Fonts via the control panel, Appearance and Personalization. And when they do occur they always have FONTNAME_0.ttf (is this always common for TTF files?).

I have 1306 fonts according to FontFrenzy but it doesn't show all of them via the Appearance and Personalization control panel.

Also, in C:\Windows\Fonts, the fonts only show as the file name, e.g. arial.ttf (but for some odd reason arial_0.ttf appears, same for other fonts).

Why is this, and anyone else had this problem before!

I hardly know any real facts about the topic, but I thought I'd share my thoughts for what it's worth.

## How Windows stores Fonts

To my understanding, every font sub-type (as distinguished by the font characteristics) is stored in a single file on Windows (or, at least, it can be). This can lead to a bit of confusion. Let's look at an example.

As you can see, the Adobe Heiti Std R font (first on the second row) is visualized by single paper sheet with Abg on it. This is a single font, representing a single font file.
In contrast, the Arial font (last on the third row) is visualized by 3 sheets of paper. This means it's a font family consisting of multiple font files (which provide the same font but with differing characteristics).

However, this does not explain any _0 file names. Those exist for a different reason.

## So where do the names come from?

Here is a directory listing I just did a minute ago:

C:\Windows\Fonts>dir aria*
2011-05-11  00:34           778,552 arial.ttf
2011-01-17  01:32           749,004 arialbd.ttf
2011-01-17  01:32           561,924 arialbi.ttf
2011-01-17  01:32           555,884 ariali.ttf
2006-07-14  12:01           173,936 ARIALN.TTF
2006-07-14  12:01           178,864 ARIALNB.TTF
2006-07-14  12:01           178,316 ARIALNBI.TTF
2006-07-14  12:01           179,368 ARIALNI.TTF
2002-11-18  18:44        23,275,812 ARIALUNI.TTF
9 File(s)     26,631,660 bytes
0 Dir(s)  163,335,311,360 bytes free


As you can see, no _0 files exist by default.

Now, if I copy arial.ttf to my desktop, right-click it and select Install, the following dialog will pop up:

Now, you should click No! If you don't, this is the result:

C:\Windows\Fonts>dir aria*
2011-05-11  00:34           778,552 arial.ttf
2011-01-17  01:32           749,004 arialbd.ttf
2011-01-17  01:32           561,924 arialbi.ttf
2011-01-17  01:32           555,884 ariali.ttf
2006-07-14  12:01           173,936 ARIALN.TTF
2006-07-14  12:01           178,864 ARIALNB.TTF
2006-07-14  12:01           178,316 ARIALNBI.TTF
2006-07-14  12:01           179,368 ARIALNI.TTF
2002-11-18  18:44        23,275,812 ARIALUNI.TTF
2011-05-11  00:34           778,552 ARIAL_0.TTF
10 File(s)     27,410,212 bytes
0 Dir(s)  163,332,550,656 bytes free


Please note, that I now have a file called ARIAL_0.TTF.

So, when you were importing those fonts, you might have brought some system fonts along. Obviously, Microsoft and I slightly differ in our definitions of the term "replace".