How can I stop fonts from enabling?
January 23, 2012 12:45 PM   Subscribe

MacBook Pro late 2011. OSX 10.7.2. Why is FontBook enabling various fonts without me doing it? And how can I prevent this?

I am an art director who has used Macs for work for over a decade. I have a folder full of many, many fonts which I have stored in Documents. I have noticed recently (by accident) when using InDesign and Illustrator (CS5) that there are a huge number of fonts active which I never enabled. I understand there's system fonts and the ones I use regularly, but some of the active ones are really obscure or silly, like Curlz, old-timey Western style stuff, fonts I've never heard of like Braggadoccio and Chalk Dust, along with a gigantic boatload of Asian and mid eastern fonts.

I use FontBook to turn on and off fonts, and I have never tried to use these fonts ever in the past. Why would these be enabled automatically? Again, I store these fonts in my Documents, not in any library. And this is a 2 month old computer. I've got 8 GB RAM so it's not necessarily slowing down, I just want it to run lean and clean it up.

Also, is it safe to simply manually disable the many Asian, Cyrillic and middle eastern fonts? How can I prevent fonts from becoming active without my input?

Thanks for any light you can shed on this.
posted by jeff-o-matic to Computers & Internet (8 answers total)
Perhaps Adobe apps are trying to reinstall and reactivate fonts which are "missing". If you test this and that is what is happening, this document discusses a solution for MSFT Office doing the same thing, by renaming the font folder in the application folder.
posted by Blazecock Pileon at 1:05 PM on January 23, 2012

I thought it might be Adobe, but when using InDesign or Illustrator, it still asks me to activate a font in a file if I don't have it. And I can't imagine why Curlz for instance would be one that got activated. I have never used it and never even heard about it.
posted by jeff-o-matic at 1:16 PM on January 23, 2012

Applications sometimes install fonts into your font library - MS Office is famous for this -- it dumps about 150 fonts in there that are active by default, by virtue of residing in /Library/Fonts. Have you installed any programs recently that might have put those fonts in there, or in ~/Library Fonts? Apple does have a list of essential system fonts that need to reside in /Library/Fonts in order for the system to function -- you can track that down & delete everything else in there, though that's a bit of a pain.
posted by Devils Rancher at 1:40 PM on January 23, 2012

Well, I do have MS Office on my machine, so maybe that's it. But I still can't see where some of the really goofy ones come from.
posted by jeff-o-matic at 1:45 PM on January 23, 2012

But I still can't see where some of the really goofy ones come from.

MacHD > Library > Fonts > Microsoft
MacHD > Library > Application Support > Adobe > Fonts

These two are where all of your worst fonts live.
posted by Thorzdad at 1:58 PM on January 23, 2012

Thorzdad: That's it. Are these safe to trash?
posted by jeff-o-matic at 2:09 PM on January 23, 2012

In the Adobe folder, you can probably trash any of the fonts except for the ones in the Reqrd sub-folder. Those are used in the Adobe apps themselves. I'd make copies, juts in case, of course.

I really can't say about the Microsoft folder. I'd check to see how many of them show-up in FontBook, since they are in the main Font folder already. I know I've turned-off a ton of Microsoft fonts using FontBook.
posted by Thorzdad at 2:23 PM on January 23, 2012

DO NOT just trash the Adobe folder itself. You need to keep the file path intact so the apps can find the Reqrd font folder.
posted by Thorzdad at 2:25 PM on January 23, 2012

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