Browser "Safe" Fonts!

by Shruti Gupta

Fonts make a big difference to the look and experience of the website. Usage of fonts requires sense of aesthetics and discretion. We have the liberty to use any font we want in an image but when we specify the fonts for the text on a web page, we need to ensure that we use only 'browser safe" fonts.

Browsers support TrueType fonts and all operating systems come with sets of standard TrueType fonts that have been preinstalled. These preinstalled TrueType fonts are what we can say are "browser safe" fonts.

My recommendation is to specify at least three fonts from the following list in the stylesheet. Out of the three fonts specified, make sure that at least one of them is available in Macintosh and one for Windows. Also, please remember that multi-word font names should be in quotes (example "Times New Roman").

So, here is a list of fonts that are preinstalled in Windows and Macintosh computers as they come out of the box.

Windows OS:

  • Arial (Bold, Italic, Bold Italic)
  • Arial Black
  • Comic Sans (Bold)
  • Courier New (Bold, Italic, Bold Italic)
  • Franklin Gothic Medium (Italic) - as of Windows XP
  • Georgia (Bold, Italic, Bold Italic)
  • Impact
  • Lucida Console
  • Lucida Sans Unicode
  • Marlett
  • MS Sans Serif - as of Windows XP
  • Palatino Linotype (Bold, Italic, Bold Italic)
  • Symbol
  • Tahoma (Bold)
  • Times New Roman (Bold, Italic, Bold Italic)
  • Trebuchet (Bold, Italic, Bold Italic)
  • Verdana (Bold, Italic, Bold Italic)
  • Webdings

Mac OS:

  • American Typewriter (Bold)
  • Andale Mono - Only installed in OS X if Classic is installed
  • Apple Chancery
  • Apple Symbols
  • Arial (Bold, Italic, Bold Italic)
  • Arial Black
  • Arial Narrow (Bold, Italic, Bold Italic)
  • Arial Rounded MT Bold
  • Baskerville (Bold, Italic, Bold Italic)
  • Big Caslon
  • Brush Script MT
  • Capitals - Only installed in OS X if Classic is installed
  • Charcoal - Only installed in OS X if Classic is installed
  • Chicago - Only installed in OS X if Classic is installed
  • Cochin (Bold, Italic, Bold Italic)
  • Comic Sans MS (Bold)
  • Copperplate (Bold)
  • Courier (Bold, Oblique, Bold Oblique) - Only installed in OS X if Classic is installed
  • Courier New (Bold, Italic, Bold Italic)
  • Didot (Bold, Italic)
  • Futura (Sans-serif)
  • Gadget - Only installed in OS X if Classic is installed
  • Geneva
  • Georgia (Bold, Italic, Bold Italic)
  • Gill Sans (Bold, Italic, Bold Italic)
  • Helvetica (Bold, Oblique, Bold Oblique)
  • Helvetica Neue (Bold, Italic, Bold Italic)
  • Herculanum
  • Hoefler Text (Bold, Italic, Bold Italic)
  • Impact
  • Marker Felt
  • Monaco
  • New York - Only installed in OS X if Classic is installed
  • Optima (Bold, Italic, Bold Italic)
  • Palatino (Bold, Italic, Bold Italic) - Only installed in OS X if Classic is installed
  • Papyrus
  • Sand - Only installed in OS X if Classic is installed
  • Skia
  • Symbol
  • Techno - Only installed in OS X if Classic is installed
  • Textile - Only installed in OS X if Classic is installed
  • Times (Bold, Italic, Bold Italic)
  • Times New Roman (Bold, Italic, Bold Italic)
  • Trebuchet (Bold, Italic, Bold Italic)
  • Verdana (Bold, Italic, Bold Italic)
  • Webdings - Only installed in OS X if Classic is installed
  • Zapf Dingbats
  • Zapfino

About the Author: Shruti Gupta works for Ecommerce Partners.net (http://www.ecommercepartners.net) website design company based in New York. Her life revolves around developing search engine friendly websites. Email:info@ecommercepartners.net

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