Chrome Won’t Display Unicode Characters

Unicode Character Problem

I found today that Chrome was refusing to display certain unicode characters when they appeared on a web page. Instead it would display a little place-holder box. I had a unicode font installed on the computer which should have let Chrome display the characters, and in fact if I copied and pasted the place-holder boxes from the web page into the address bar, they would appear there as actual characters. But not on the web page itself. Trying in Firefox, they would display correctly on the page.

Why Won’t Chrome Display Unicode Characters

When Chrome comes across a character which doesn’t appear in the font used to render the page it checks a list of other fonts to see if any of them have that character. When it still can’t find it, it displays the place-holder box. Firefox on the other hand checks a list of other fonts¬†and has its own internal set to check if it still can’t find it. Although I had a font installed on my system, it wasn’t one of the ones on the list that Chrome checked.

Solution To Display Unicode Characters In Chrome

The answer was annoyingly easy after going crazy wondering why it wasn’t working; install a different font which definitely¬†is on Chrome’s list. In this case, “Code2000”, which is origianally by James Kass. Install the font, re-open Chrome and the characters appear on the web page as they’re supposed to.

Download Code2000 Fonts