Learning Paths

Missing Fonts

If you receive InDesign documents from other people then a common problem you are likely to see is missing fonts. Missing fonts means that the InDesign document was created using a font that does not exist on the computer you are trying to open it with. In an ideal world, the sender would package the InDesign document to ensure the fonts, InDesign document and images are together in a folder, and send you that folder. This would then mean you would have everything to open the document without any problems. Unfortunately, that doesn’t aways happen. There could also be issues to do with the copyright and licensing of fonts that prevents the user sending them to you.

So lets take a look at our options if we don’t have access to the font.

Missing Font panel

When opening an InDesign document that contains a missing font you will see the below panel pop-up.

The panel itself indicates missing fonts or a font. In the above screenshot it can be seen that the missing font is Alien League and if the OK button was pressed InDesign would substitute the missing font with an available font. InDesign will highlight the text formatted with the missing font with a pink highlight, as shown below, within the document.

Swopping the font

When a problem occurs it is always best to fix it, straight away. Lets do that, and swop the font Alien League for another available font. Clicking on the Find Font… button opens the Find Font panel.

The missing font Alien League is indicated with the yellow triangle icon. Two other fonts Adobe Caslon Pro Bold and Adobe Caslon Pro Regular exist in the document but aren’t missing. Lets now swop Alien League to Adobe Caslon Pro Regular.

First, it is necessary to click on Alien League to highlight it, as this is the font we want to change because it is missing (highlighted in red below). Next, we need to choose the font we want to replace it with. From the Font Family drop down menu I chose Adobe Caslon Pro (highlighted in green below). The Font Style drop down menu was already set to Regular so I didn’t need to change that.

Next, we need to click on the Change All button for InDesign to change all text formatted with Alien League to Adobe Caslon Pro Regular. You will see Alien League disappear from the Find Font panel.

Finally, click the Done button to close the Find Font panel and the Missing Fonts panel. Any text that was previously formatted with the Alien League font will now use Adobe Caslon Pro Regular and will no longer be highlighted in pink.

Saving the document will mean the next time you open the document you won’t see the Find Font panel again, brilliant!