How to Install New Fonts on Your Computer

Windows, Mac, and Linux operating systems all come with a set of standard system fonts that will display in native programs, office products, web browsers, and other applications. The easiest way to view your computer's font library is to open your word processing program (MS Word, Open Office) and examine the list of fonts in the styling menus. Some common fonts include  Times  (serif),  Verdana  and  Arial  (sans-serif), and  Courier  (monotype).

If you want to add new fonts to your system, you must first download a font file with the extension .ttf (TrueType Font) or .otf (OpenType Font), both of which are compatible with Windows, Mac, and Linux systems. If the file is zipped or compressed, extract the files.

Many fonts are free to download for personal use, for others you may have to purchase a license. If you download a new font for commercial use, make sure to check the copyright information.

Once you have downloaded the font file, close any other programs that are running.

Next, open the system file that contains the font library, the destination for your new fonts. If you are running Windows, you can do this by opening Control Panel and locating the Fonts folder. For Mac OS X, look for the Fonts folder in the Library folder. For Mac OS 8.x and 9.x, go to the System folder. On Linux, go to the /usr/share/fonts/ directory.

After finding your font library, copy and paste or drag and drop the new fonts into the library. You may be able to see the new fonts immediately, or you may have to restart your computer.

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