Buyer’s Guide: Cleaning your Font Cache

Are your fonts looking garbled or acting wonky for no reason? Do you think it’s possibly the new font that you installed causing issues, even though it worked perfectly last week? Or are fonts mysteriously missing from your drop down menu in one program, but appear in another? If you said yes to any of the above questions then you may have to clean your Font Cache.


Here are some ways to clean your cache, please note that you will have to restart your computer after cleaning. So, save and quit all programs beforehand.

Windows 2000/XP/Vista/7

The Windows operating system has a font cache file that is located here:


Delete this file, and restart your system. A new FNTCACHE.DAT file will be created on startup.

Mac OS X

Our support team recommends Font Finagler or Font Nuke to help cleanse your system’s cache. Check out our help section for more details on how to use Font Finagler to clear your Font Cache.

Once you’ve cleared your font cache, you’ll want to open a few programs to make sure that your fonts are behaving. Everything should be back to normal, but if it isn’t you can always contact FontShop for help.


  1. Posted March 6, 2013 at 5:21 AM | Permalink

    Excellent article 🙂

  2. Posted March 6, 2013 at 7:25 AM | Permalink

    Some of the font manager tools also offer this possibility, Linotype FontExprorer Pro to name just one.

    Also, for the Mac, there is a free fantastic tool called Onyx which cleans out the font cache and other caches of your selection.

  3. Ian
    Posted March 6, 2013 at 10:44 AM | Permalink

    Dear Fontshop,

    What has been your experiences using Font Finagler in the current Mac Os? I had trouble!

    I have used and loved Font Finagler. It did amazing things for my computer, helping it to run faster and to clean-up irregularities in the font workings.

    However, I would caution you about using it in the current state (FontFinagler 1.5 beta).

    I had a lot of trouble and mysterious occurrences once I used it on my Mac, Os 10.7.4 at the time. Indeed, the FontFinagler website says that they only support up to system 10.4.x. and they didn’t respond to my email for support on the current Os. Also, it put a file into an obscure place in my mac that was very hard to get out and uninstall.

    Sorry, be vague about the exact errors and how I fixed it…this all happened a while ago and I didn’t document it.

    So, my advice is not to use it until it can be uninstalled more easily and it officially supports Os 10.8.2.

    Best wishes!

    [Edit, I found my email to Mark Douma outlining the problems I had.]

    Thanks for your really helpful piece of software. It’s solved a lot of mysterious system bog-downs for me. I think as a designer I have too many fonts!

    I’m on system OsX 10.7.4.

    I have been having a problem with fonts after turning on the “Preserve Fontbooks Disabled Font’s” option. Out of curiosity, I turned it on, ran the program and restarted. I decided I didn’t need it and turned it off and reran/restarted. However, even through it’s off, all of my non-system fonts are disabled every time I start my computer. I have to go into Fontbook and turn them on again. If they are listed as on in Fontbook, I have to disable them and re-enable them to get them loaded again for my Adobe software, etc…

    Any suggestions on how to resolve this? I can find a preference file to remove or start-up option to turn off. If not, then consider this a bug report.

  4. Dion Blundell
    Posted March 6, 2013 at 11:57 AM | Permalink

    What about linux? I use ubuntu.

  5. Posted March 6, 2013 at 2:11 PM | Permalink

    This fixed font problems I was having with safari! yey!

  6. Theresa
    Posted March 7, 2013 at 3:44 PM | Permalink

    @Ian I’ve use Font Finagler to clear my cache and haven’t have issues, but if you have a lot of fonts then you may look into licensing a Font Management tool.

    @Dion Try this:

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s