[Tip] How to Change Fonts of Menus, Dialog Box and Other Text in Windows 8 and Later

SUMMARY: This tutorial will help you in changing the default "Segoe UI" font of various menus, context (right-click) menus, dialog boxes and other visible text in Windows 8, Windows 8.1 and Windows 10. You'll be able to change the font to any other desired font such as Tahoma, Verdana, Times New Roman, Arial, etc.

In Windows 7 and earlier Windows versions, users were able to change the font style, font size and font color of different menus and dialog boxes using Advanced appearance settings which was a part of Desktop Personalization (or Desktop Properties) window as shown in following image:

Advanced_Appearance_Settings_Windows.png

But in Windows 8 and later Windows versions, Microsoft removed the advanced appearance settings feature and now users can't change the font style or color. The only option which is still available to users is customizing the font size. You can change the font size of menus, message boxes, icons, title bars, etc using Display settings as mentioned in following tutorials:

[Tip] Increase Titlebar Text Font Size in Windows 10

How to Change Font Size and Color in Windows 8 and Later?

The above tutorial also tells you about Registry tweaks which can be used to customize various colors, icon size, buttons size and other UI elements which were a part of the good ol' advanced appearance settings feature.

Although Microsoft has removed the option to change default fonts of menus and dialog boxes in Windows 8/8.1/10, you can still change the font using a simple Registry tweak. Today in this tutorial, we are going to share a Registry trick which can be used to change the font of menus, dialog boxes and other visible text in Windows 8 and later.

Actually Windows keeps an entry of all installed fonts in Registry Editor under "Fonts" key. This Registry key contains several Strings containing the installed font's .ttf file name as its value and if a font's entry is not found under "Fonts" key, Windows looks for its substitute font in "FontSubstitutes" key.

Since Windows 8 and later use "Segoe UI" font as default font everywhere, we are going to remove its entry from "Fonts" key in Registry which will make this font unavailable for Windows use. After that we'll set our desired font such as Tahoma, Verdana, etc as the substitute font for "Segoe UI" using "FontSubstitutes" key. When Windows will not find entry of "Segoe UI" font in "Fonts" key, it'll look for its substitute inĀ "FontSubstitutes" key and then it'll start using our desired font to display text in all areas instead of the "Segoe UI" font.

Following image shows the default "Segoe UI" font being used everywhere in Windows 8 and later:

Default_Segoe_UI_Font_Windows_10.png

Following image shows custom "Tahoma" font being used everywhere in Windows 8 and later:

Custom_Tahoma_Font_Windows_10.png

So if you also want to change the default "Segoe UI" font to other desired font in Windows 8 and later, check out following simple steps:

STEP 1:

Press WIN+R keys together to launch RUN dialog box. Now type regedit in RUN and press Enter. It'll open Registry Editor.

STEP 2:

Now we'll remove "Segoe UI" font entry from "Fonts" key in Registry. To remove all entries of "Segoe UI" font, go to following key in Registry Editor:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Fonts

In right-side pane, scroll down and look for Segoe UI font entries. You'll find several entries for Segoe UI font variants such as Segoe UI, Segoe UI Black, Segoe UI Bold, etc.

Double-click on each Segoe UI string and empty its value data field i.e. delete the .ttf font name from its value data field and make the value data field blank.

Don't change value data field of Segoe UI Emoji, Segoe UI Historic and Segoe UI Symbol fonts as these fonts are used to show some icons and smileys in some UI areas.

Removing_Segoe_UI_Font_Registry_Windows.png

You can safely empty value data field of following Segoe UI font variants:

Segoe UI
Segoe UI Black
Segoe UI Black Italic
Segoe UI Bold
Segoe UI Bold Italic
Segoe UI Italic
Segoe UI Light
Segoe UI Light Italic
Segoe UI Semibold
Segoe UI Semibold Italic
Segoe UI Semilight
Segoe UI Semilight Italic

Just double-click on each Segoe UI font entry and delete the value present in value data field which will make the value data field empty.

PS: Before deleting the value you can note it down somewhere in case you want to restore the default font in future.

STEP 3:

Now we'll set the font substitute for "Segoe UI". Go to following key in Registry Editor:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\FontSubstitutes

In right-side pane, right-click and select "New -> String Value" option. Set its name as Segoe UI and set its value to your desired font name. For example, if you want to change the default "Segoe UI" font to Tahoma font, then set the value of Segoe UI string to Tahoma. You just need to find out name of desired font and then set the same name as the value of Segoe UI string in Registry.

Setting_Font_Substitute_Registry_Windows.png

STEP 4:

That's it. Restart your computer and get ready to enjoy your desired font in all menus, context menus, dialog boxes and other text in Windows.

NOTE 1:

If you decide to restore default "Segoe UI" font in future, simply restore default values of all Segoe UI font variants in "Fonts" key and delete the "Segoe UI" string created inside "FontSubstitutes" key in Registry. We have also provided a ready-made Registry script to automatically restore default settings and values in Registry below for your convenience.

NOTE 2:

If you are not comfortable with Registry editing tasks and found the tutorial complicated, we are also sharing a ready-made Registry script which will do the whole task automatically. You just need to download following ZIP file, extract the ZIP file using 7-Zip or any other file archive utility and then run the "Change Default Font in Windows 8, 8.1 and Windows 10.REG" file. It'll ask for confirmation, accept it. Restart your computer to take effects:

Download Registry Script to Change Default Font in Windows 8 and Later

This Registry script will change the default font to Tahoma. If you want to change the font to any other desired font, right-click on the "Change Default Font in Windows 8, 8.1 and Windows 10.REG" file and select Edit option. It'll open the Registry script file in Notepad. Now go to the end of the file and replace Tahoma word with your desired font name such as Verdana, Arial, etc. Save the file and run the .REG file. Reboot your system to take effects.

In future if you decide to restore default "Segoe UI" font in Windows, you can run "Restore Default Font in Windows 8, 8.1 and Windows 10.REG" file included in the ZIP file. After running the REG file restart your computer and it'll restore the default look in Windows menus, dialog boxes, etc.





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Posted in: Windows 10, Windows 8 / 8.1


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Comments

  • Excellent article!

  • Segoe UI is a great font, why you want to change that ? :3

  • Thanks!

  • Thank you.

  • Will this affect the Segoe UI font in other applications (i.e. I have many spreadsheets with content in the font Segoe UI and I dont want to change that fonts over there)

  • VG

    ^^ It should not as the font is embedded in those applications.

  • Instead of changing the "Font Substitutes" key, I prefer to change the registry settings in:
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Desktop\WindowMetrics

    For example, to change all of the default display fonts (for Windows dialogues, menus, etc.) to "Times New Roman", I apply the following .reg file:

    ===
    Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

    [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Desktop\WindowMetrics]
    "CaptionFont"=hex:f1,ff,ff,ff,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,90,01,00,00,\
    00,00,00,01,00,00,05,00,54,00,69,00,6d,00,65,00,73,00,20,00,4e,00,65,00,77,\
    00,20,00,52,00,6f,00,6d,00,61,00,6e,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,\
    00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00
    "SmCaptionFont"=hex:f1,ff,ff,ff,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,90,01,00,00,\
    00,00,00,01,00,00,05,00,54,00,69,00,6d,00,65,00,73,00,20,00,4e,00,65,00,77,\
    00,20,00,52,00,6f,00,6d,00,61,00,6e,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,\
    00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00
    "MenuFont"=hex:f1,ff,ff,ff,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,90,01,00,00,\
    00,00,00,01,00,00,05,00,54,00,69,00,6d,00,65,00,73,00,20,00,4e,00,65,00,77,\
    00,20,00,52,00,6f,00,6d,00,61,00,6e,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,\
    00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00
    "StatusFont"=hex:f1,ff,ff,ff,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,90,01,00,00,\
    00,00,00,01,00,00,05,00,54,00,69,00,6d,00,65,00,73,00,20,00,4e,00,65,00,77,\
    00,20,00,52,00,6f,00,6d,00,61,00,6e,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,\
    00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00
    "MessageFont"=hex:f1,ff,ff,ff,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,90,01,00,00,\
    00,00,00,01,00,00,05,00,54,00,69,00,6d,00,65,00,73,00,20,00,4e,00,65,00,77,\
    00,20,00,52,00,6f,00,6d,00,61,00,6e,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,\
    00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00
    "IconFont"=hex:f1,ff,ff,ff,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,90,01,00,00,\
    00,00,00,01,00,00,05,00,54,00,69,00,6d,00,65,00,73,00,20,00,4e,00,65,00,77,\
    00,20,00,52,00,6f,00,6d,00,61,00,6e,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,\
    00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00

    ===

    or to change dialogue fonts to "Tahoma", I apply the following:

    ===
    Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

    [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Desktop\WindowMetrics]
    "CaptionFont"=hex:f1,ff,ff,ff,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,90,01,00,00,\
    00,00,00,01,00,00,05,00,53,00,65,00,67,00,6f,00,65,00,20,00,55,00,49,00,00,\
    00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,\
    00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00
    "SmCaptionFont"=hex:f1,ff,ff,ff,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,90,01,00,\
    00,00,00,00,01,00,00,05,00,54,00,61,00,68,00,6f,00,6d,00,61,00,00,00,00,00,\
    00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,\
    00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00
    "MenuFont"=hex:f4,ff,ff,ff,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,90,01,00,00,00,\
    00,00,01,00,00,05,00,54,00,61,00,68,00,6f,00,6d,00,61,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,\
    00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,\
    00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00
    "StatusFont"=hex:f4,ff,ff,ff,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,90,01,00,00,\
    00,00,00,01,00,00,05,00,54,00,61,00,68,00,6f,00,6d,00,61,00,00,00,00,00,00,\
    00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,\
    00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00
    "MessageFont"=hex:f4,ff,ff,ff,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,90,01,00,00,\
    00,00,00,01,00,00,05,00,54,00,61,00,68,00,6f,00,6d,00,61,00,00,00,00,00,00,\
    00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,\
    00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00
    "IconFont"=hex:f4,ff,ff,ff,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,90,01,00,00,00,\
    00,00,01,00,00,05,00,54,00,61,00,68,00,6f,00,6d,00,61,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,\
    00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,\
    00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00

    ===

    and, important, to change back to the default "Segoe UI", I apply the following .reg files:

    ===
    Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

    [HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Control Panel\Desktop\WindowMetrics]
    "CaptionFont"=hex:f1,ff,ff,ff,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,90,01,00,00,\
    00,00,00,01,00,00,05,00,53,00,65,00,67,00,6f,00,65,00,20,00,55,00,49,00,00,\
    00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,\
    00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00
    "SmCaptionFont"=hex:f1,ff,ff,ff,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,90,01,00,\
    00,00,00,00,01,00,00,05,00,53,00,65,00,67,00,6f,00,65,00,20,00,55,00,49,00,\
    00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,\
    00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00
    "MenuFont"=hex:f4,ff,ff,ff,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,90,01,00,00,00,\
    00,00,01,00,00,05,00,53,00,65,00,67,00,6f,00,65,00,20,00,55,00,49,00,00,00,\
    00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,\
    00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00
    "StatusFont"=hex:f4,ff,ff,ff,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,90,01,00,00,\
    00,00,00,01,00,00,05,00,53,00,65,00,67,00,6f,00,65,00,20,00,55,00,49,00,00,\
    00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,\
    00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00
    "MessageFont"=hex:f4,ff,ff,ff,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,90,01,00,00,\
    00,00,00,01,00,00,05,00,53,00,65,00,67,00,6f,00,65,00,20,00,55,00,49,00,00,\
    00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,\
    00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00
    "IconFont"=hex:f4,ff,ff,ff,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,90,01,00,00,00,\
    00,00,01,00,00,05,00,53,00,65,00,67,00,6f,00,65,00,20,00,55,00,49,00,00,00,\
    00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,\
    00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00,00

    ===

    The registry settings are store the font names in Unicode. One can also mix and match to one's personal preferences, as we used to be able to do in previous versions.

    (Note: this method does require one to log off to apply and see the changes.)

  • BTW, the Segoe UI font does not support italics in Hebrew. Maybe also in other Right to Left languages.

    In that respect it is not better than Arial font, who supported italics in hebrew.

  • Thank you VG,
    and thank you J.Stanley.
    I used your methods to change my icon font to my favourite font in Win 8.1 x64.
    (not Segoe or Times NR. . . )
    The restore REG-files provided, are a necessary insurance.
    Once again, AskVG to the resque!

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