Kerning doesn't work in MS Word

mtension's picture

When I generate .ttf from FontLab the custom kerning I built works in Adobe software but not in MS Word. Anyone know why? I have been trying to figure this out for a few days with no success. Best I have found is how to turn Kerning on and off in Word, but turning this option on has no effect.

Any advice is appreciated. Thank you.

Reed Reibstein's picture

EDIT: Oh, I'm sorry, I didn't read your post carefully enough. I'll leave what I wrote in case it's different from how you've been turning kerning on and off.

Kerning is, remarkably, off in Word by default. Under the font menu (typically Ctrl-D), click on character spacing, then check the box for kerning and type in a minimal point size at which kerning appears (1 pt seems to be the smallest).

mtension's picture

Thanks Auricfuzz for responding, but I have tried your suggestion and the kerning I have built still does not work after turning the option on. I even did a very exaggerated kern to make it obvious and it didn’t show up in Word at all.

Thanks for you time all the same.

Fontgrube's picture

Have you uninstalled the first version of the font, then closed Word as well as the MS office quickstarter, then installed the new font and only then reopened your test document? (Assuming you work with Windows - it is normally the Windows users that don't specify the OS ;-)


mtension's picture

Oh yeah, sorry Fontgrube, I am running on OS X. Yeah I have done the re-launch after install each time I tried a new version of the .ttf. No luck there. I figure I might be missing something in my Font Info or in the font exporting options. I am not sure.

John Hudson's picture

Does your font use kern table kerning or GPOS kerning?

mtension's picture

Hey John, I am not sure. I want to say no, but I am going to have to read up on this and double check to be sure. Thanks for addressing this. I will post when I know.

John Hudson's picture

Open FontLab Options (Tools menu). Go to the 'Generating OpenType & TrueType' 'Kerning' sub-panel. Which options are checked?

mtension's picture

Hey John, I do not find The ‘Generating Open Type & True Type’ under Tools. But here is the same secion in the preferences as it is now:

Miguel Sousa's picture

Click on the triangle that precedes the word "Generating" and you'll find the "Kerning" pane.

mtension's picture

Still no luck. Thanks very much for your time, I do really appreciate all of the suggestions.

John Hudson's picture

Did you find the 'Kerning' options?

Try generating a font with the ‘Export old-style non-OpenType "kern" table’ option selected instead of the ‘Generate OpenType "kern" feature...’ option, i.e. uncheck the latter option and turn on only the first. This will create a font with a kern table, which Office should be able to handle.

mtension's picture

Still not working. Bummer. Thanks again John, I appreciate your time. I will keep trying.

adilturbo's picture

i have the same issue; did you find a solution?

thanks in advance

jshen's picture

I wrestled with this a lot a year ago with a unicode-based Native American font. The kerning never worked in Word. I contacted a lot of people and came to accept it was a Word problem, not a font problem. Had to change the entire spacing approach since most of my end-users were Word-users. Sorry to have this kind of response.

adilturbo's picture

ok thank you for the reply.

is there any other tool (text editor) where i can test kerning?


dberlow's picture

>is there any other tool (text editor) where i can test kerning?

You mean besides anything except Word?


adilturbo's picture

i mean an other text editor that can execute kerning features that are included in the font.


johnnydib's picture

Oh thanks guys.
I did turn on the kerning in MS Word using the (Ctrl-D) shortcut that Reid mentioned. And my font is displaying proper kerning.
I don't know if it makes a difference but my font contains relatively few kerning pairs. I built them by creating a single kerning class for all the lowercase letters that don't have an ascender, and then I "tucked them under F, P, T and Y with different values for each capital.

However my Kerning sub-panel in the Options menu looks like this

It doesn't have an 'Export old-style non-OpenType "kern" table' checkbox. (I'm using Font Lab 5.0.0)

johnych's picture

This is an old topic but I have learned what causes the problem and decided to share with you guys.
Just to remind: the problem is that MS Word 2003 and 2007 refuses to show kerning defined in plain 'kern' table in TTFs even if you turn kerning on in the Character Spacing dialog.
This only happens if you have at least one kerning pair defined for a glyph without a Unicode index. MS Word ignores the whole 'kern' table in this case.


Syndicate content Syndicate content