Do Not Disable These Fonts!

Contributed by Beth Rosengard

Most applications require the presence of certain specific fonts in order to function correctly.  Microsoft Office 2004 is no different. When you install Office, the installer will create a folder that, for all practical purposes, is an archive for the Office fonts.  You'll find it, and the 77 fonts it contains (see Appendix), here: 

Home/Applications/Microsoft Office 2004/Office/Fonts 

The Operating System ignores this folder and so should you. 

During installation, Office refers to this folder to install the same 77 fonts in the Operating System's user font folder where they can actually be used:


Note:  There are several other font folders the system calls on in addition to the user's font folder.  For more on OS X and the font folder hierarchy, see this Apple Knowledge Base article. Fonts in OS X are complex. You need to understand how they work before experimenting with them (and in any case, leave the System font folder – Harddrive/System/Library/Fonts – alone!).


Because various applications install fonts, without regard to what's already there (not to speak of the fonts that you yourself may install), it is quite common to end up with font folders full of duplicates as well as fonts you don't expect to ever need.

Resolving Duplicate Fonts

Since duplicate fonts can cause conflicts, it's a good idea to resolve them. You can do this relatively easily by using the OS's Font Book application (but be sure to read the caveats below!):

CAVEAT: Since Font Book will not look to see which version of your duplicate font is the most current, nor which one may have been created by Microsoft, it may disable the Unicode version of a particular font.  Since the Unicode versions of fonts have many more characters available, you don't want that to happen!  In those cases, you will need to disable the non-Unicode version manually, using the Disable button at the bottom of the Font Book window. The Mac MS Unicode fonts are these:

Arial (but not the huge Arial Unicode MS font that's available with Windows Office)
Times New Roman
Trebuchet MS
MS Gothic
MS Mincho
MS PGothic
MS PMincho

In Tiger, you can view the specs of a font by clicking on it in Font Book and doing a Get Info (Command>i).

Font Book Screenshot

In Panther, you will get some information by hovering over the name of the font but to get the version number, creator's name and copyright date, you will have to navigate to the font in its folder in the Finder and then do a Get Info.  Even then, you will not get the nifty description you see above.

One more possible caveat: You may wish to use a third-party application to resolve duplicates (and check for corrupt fonts, if that's an issue).  Font Book can on occasion do a less than stellar job, but it should work fine for resolving duplicates.

Disabling or Removing Fonts

If your computer has sufficient RAM (and most modern computers need at least 1GB to function optimally), then you can safely ignore all the fonts that you think you'll never use.  They're not doing any harm and you might want them someday.

However, many users can't tolerate the clutter of unnecessary fonts.  If you're one of them, you can disable or remove the fonts you don't want around, but you MUST be sure that you're not getting rid of fonts that are essential to the proper functioning of your applications (not to speak of the Operating System itself)!

Where the Office applications (only) are concerned ... do not disable these fonts:

Hiragino Kaku Gothic Pro W3
Lucida Grande
MS PMincho
MS Gothic
MS Mincho
MS Pgothic
MT Extra
Times New Roman

We have it on the authority of the Microsoft Macintosh Business Unit that these fonts are necessary to the proper functioning of Microsoft Office 2004.

Finally, if you decide to remove fonts rather than just disabling them, consider creating an archive instead.  It's easy enough to drag the fonts to a folder instead of the trash and then Control>Click and choose Create Archive. The resulting zipped file can be stored somewhere ... just in case!

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If you ever need to know the full list of fonts installed by Office 2004, all you really have to do is look at the Office 2004 fonts folder (/Applications/Microsoft Office 2004/Office/Fonts).  But just for the record – and in case you happened to delete it (tsk!) – here it is:

Abadi MT Condensed Extra Bold
Abadi MT Condensed Light
Andale Mono
Arial Black
Arial Narrow
Arial Rounded Bold
Baskerville Old Face
Bauhaus 93
Bell MT
Bernard MT Condensed
Book Antiqua
Bookman Old Style
Britannic Bold
Brush Script
Calisto MT
Century Gothic
Century Schoolbook
Comic Sans MS
Cooper Black
Copperplate Gothic Bold
Copperplate Gothic Light
Curlz MT
Edwardian Script ITC
Engravers MT
Footlight Light
Gill Sans Ultra Bold
Gloucester MT Extra Condensed
Goudy Old Style
Imprint MT Shadow
Lucida Blackletter
Lucida Bright
Lucida Calligraphy
Lucida Fax
Lucida Handwriting
Lucida Sans
Lucida Sans Typewriter
Matura Script Capitals
Modern No. 20
Monotype Corsiva
Monotype Sorts
MS Gothic
MS Mincho
MS PGothic
MS PMincho
MT Extra
News Gothic MT
Perpetua Titling MT
Rockwell Extra Bold
Times New Roman
Trebuchet MS
Wide Latin
Wingdings 2
Wingdings 3

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