Where in Windows 7 do Zapf Dingbats secretly lurrrrrrk?

johnbutler's picture

Ignore this post if you’re reading it on a Mac.

Either I was installing it wrong previously, or Microsoft fixed it in 1.4, and I was using 1.3, but finally I got Microsoft Keyboard Layout Creator to install and run in Windows 7, and I used it to build a custom German/English “typographer’s keyboard” layout. (My physical keyboard has a standard German layout.) This enabled me to add a bunch of extra punctuation and some archaic stuff such as ſ.

I also managed to add two dingbats from the Unicode Zapf Dingbats subset range, U+2766 and U+2767.

❦ ❧

If you can see those, you are seeing them in pure Unicode. Windows is switching fonts somewhere to display them.

My question: where in Windows is the font containing these glyphs? MacOS comes with Zapf Dingbats, but Windows does not. They’re not in Arial, or Tahoma, or Segoe, or Wingdings, or Courier, Lucida Sans Unicode, or any of the C-fonts.

I am stumped. How do you hide a font in Windows yet still make it accessible in multiple applications?

Té Rowan's picture

Does Seven still have WingDings? Oh, what a sdoobid question...

Anyway, look for an app named Babelmap. It can view and analyse installed fonts.

Theunis de Jong's picture

A Very Good Question. They look like Zapf Dingbats, but upon close inspection there are a few tiny differences (notably in the right one).

I found a few surprises lurking in my Windows 7 font list (Lucida Sans has a nice own interpretation; Segoe UI Symbol has, erm, "sans" florals?); but MS Gothic is a perfect match for the symbols I see on the screen.

Left: MS Gothic, Right: What I See in Explorer at 1000% (which may or may not be what you are seeing)

Note esp. the corner points near the tip of the curls -- less visible in the Explorer view but still discernable.

johnbutler's picture

Yes, and they ain’t in WingDings or WebDings. I don’t even have Office installed. (So I can’t get to the rare Book Antiqua versions of MS-DOS box-drawing characters.)

johnbutler's picture

A HA! Thank you Theunis. They are in MS Gothic, MS Mincho, MS PGothic, MS UI Gothic and MS PMincho. Alongside a bunch of other useful stuff. Clever, these Japanese.

Jens Kutilek's picture

Also check Segoe UI. Lots of stuff in there.

Edit: oh, I read too fast, Theunis already mentioned it.

Té Rowan's picture

A late afterthought: What's the rarity of Book Antiqua's box chara?

Theunis de Jong's picture

You mean the old DOS box drawing character set? It's not rare; a lot of Windows XP and 7's fonts contain these.

(Ah--aforementioned Segoe UI (Symbol) contains a few more surprising glyphs: Braille, 8-point 'stroke' letters, all the tetragrams of the I'Tjing ...)

Té Rowan's picture

That's what's puzzling me. They seem to be very common in CJK fonts and older system fonts. DejaVu has'em as well. Gotta be dancing elephants or something like that, then.

Si_Daniels's picture

The line draw characters were officially part of the WGL4 character set so ended up in Windows core fonts. Most third party fonts tend to skip them even if they claim WGL4 support as they are considered optional.

The Japanese font MS Gothic contains a lot of symbols, and as it's part of the font fall-back chain so you'll see them come up quite frequently.

Galane's picture

Letter Gothic Line is a monospaced font with all the old DOS ANSI line and other characters. It's perfect for viewing .NFO ASCII/ANSI art text files, also recommended by Seagate for viewing their tech specs on their old hard drives.


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