Make Cloud Fonts available to all programs, not just Office

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Microsoft 365’s Cloud Fonts are only available in Office programs … that’s the official line unless you know the trick to make the fonts available in Windows or Mac apps generally.

Cloud Fonts can be selected and installed for Word 365, Excel 365, PowerPoint 365, Outlook 365 and Publisher 365. You might have seen the little ‘cloud plus arrow’ icon in font download lists.

The Office cloud fonts are installed in a special way so they only appear in Microsoft Office 365 font selectors.  Unlike all other fonts which are installed into Windows or Mac operating systems and visible to all programs.

Office does this font hiding trick by saving the cloud fonts to a special folder.  But otherwise, cloud fonts are not anything special. Cloud fonts are TrueType fonts which are a common format for Windows and Mac.

To make a cloud font accessible to all programs all you need to do is track down the special folder and install the font properly into the operating system.

Cloud fonts into Windows

In Windows, go to this folder:

C:\Users\<user>\AppData\Local\Microsoft\FontCache\4\CloudFonts\

In Explorer go to Drive C, then the \Users folder. Select your user account folder.  Then follow the rest of the folders as shown.  Can’t see the ‘AppData’ folder? Go to View | Show/hide | Hidden items

There’s a set of folders, one for each installed Cloud Font. Select a folder for the font you want to install fully.  You’ll see .ttf TrueType font files but with numbers instead of their usual names.

To see the full name of the font (e.g. Regular, Bold, Italic etc), right-click on a .TTF file and choose ‘Preview’. The full name of the font is in the title bar, plus there’s a preview look at the font.

From there, you can install the font just like any other.  There’s an Install button in the Preview window.  Right-click on the .TTF and choose Install from the menu.  Or go to the Font section of Settings or Control Panel and install a font from there.  It’s all the same in the end.

Here’s Grandview and Grandview Bold both showing up in Windows after installation from the Office Cloud Fonts folder.

In case you’re not convinced, here’s Grandview now showing up a non-Office program, WordPad.

Office cloud fonts installed on a Mac

The process on a Mac is similar. Find the font in its special Office folder then install it fully into MacOS.

Office Cloud Fonts are saved in this folder

/<user>/Library/Group Containers/UBF8T346G9.Office/FontCache/4/CloudFonts

Open Finder, go the Favorite (at left) with your user name.  Then follow the folders down to CloudFonts

Select a folder for the font you want to install fully.  You’ll see .ttf TrueType font files but with numbers instead of their usual names.

To see the full name of the font (e.g. Regular, Bold, Italic etc), right-click on a .TTF file and choose ‘Open’ (i.e. MacOS Font Book app). The full name of the font is in the title bar, plus there’s a preview look at the font.

There’s an Install Font button in the Preview window. The font is now in Font Book app, just like any other installed font.

Mealy mouth disclaimer

Making an Office Cloud Font available beyond Office apps might be a breach of some legal requirement. However, it’s unlikely the Microsoft Police™ will turn up at your door.

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