Embedding Fonts in Excel

by Allen Wyatt
(last updated August 3, 2017)


If you are familiar with Word and PowerPoint, you may have noticed that both programs allow you to embed fonts in documents or presentations. This is very handy, particularly if you feel that someone else receiving your document or presentation may not have your font on their system.

Unfortunately, Excel does not allow you to embed fonts in workbooks. Word has an intimate relationship with something in concrete reality: the printed page. Almost everything it does is in relationship to how something will be printed, and Word queries the printer driver many times during an editing session in order to represent information accurately onscreen. PowerPoint, as well, makes at least some reference to what can be printed or displayed onscreen.

Excel, on the other hand, is not all that interested in printing because a worksheet is really just a representation of a set of quantities and relationships--things which are fundamentally abstract. In fact, it wasn't until Excel 95 that Excel's default font was changed to Arial (a TrueType font) instead of MS Sans-Serif (a non-scalable screen font whose printing vagaries are legion).

If you really must embed fonts to make your worksheet appear properly, there is one thing you can try: Embed the Excel worksheet in a Word document in which the desired font is also embedded. You will need to make sure, of course, that the font you've chosen is embeddable (some are not). When someone else opens the document, they may see the information as you intended. Of course, they will need to use Word instead of Excel for viewing the information.

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Author Bio

Allen Wyatt

With more than 50 non-fiction books and numerous magazine articles to his credit, Allen Wyatt is an internationally recognized author. He is president of Sharon Parq Associates, a computer and publishing services company. ...


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What is four minus 2?

2018-08-07 10:03:38

Santiago Clausse

There's actually a very simple method to embed the font in an Excel file.

1. Create a new sheet called 'fonts'
2. In the fonts sheet Insert > Object > Create from file
Now select your ttf font file, then press OK.

This should now create an object with the name of the font you inserted and a .ttf extension.

3. Select the object, and rename it to the same name as the font, including the .ttf. For example: Linearicons-Free.ttf

4. Add the following VBA code to the 'ThisWorkbook' object in the Visual Basic editor ( Developer > Visual Basic)

' force explicit variable declaration
Option Explicit

' set default array subscripts to 1
Option Base 1

' 32bit & 64bit dec's
#If VBA7 And Win64 Then
Private Declare PtrSafe Function AddFontResource Lib "gdi32" Alias "AddFontResourceA" (ByVal lpFilename As String) As LongPtr
Private Declare PtrSafe Function RemoveFontResource Lib "gdi32" Alias "RemoveFontResourceA" (ByVal lpFilename As String) As LongPtr
Private Declare Function AddFontResource Lib "gdi32" Alias "AddFontResourceA" (ByVal lpFilename As String) As Long
Private Declare Function RemoveFontResource Lib "gdi32" Alias "RemoveFontResourceA" (ByVal lpFilename As String) As Long
#End If

' // copy the OLE objects out to the users "temp" Folder & install the Fonts as a resource upon opening the Workbook
Private Sub Workbook_Open()

' // vars
Dim objFont As OLEObject
Dim objFilename As String
Dim objShell As Object
Set objShell = CreateObject("shell.application")
Dim objFolder As Variant
Set objFolder = objShell.Namespace(Environ("Temp") & Application.PathSeparator)
Dim objFolderItem As Variant
Set objFolderItem = objFolder.Self

' // copy out the OLE objects from the "fonts" Worksheet into a temp Folder
For Each objFont In Worksheets("fonts").OLEObjects
' // get the Filename of each Font Object
' Please note: you must set this yourself when you add embed the Fonts
objFilename = objFont.Name
' // Copy the Font to the Clipboard
' // Paste the Font from the Clipboard to the "temp" Folder
If Dir(CStr(Environ("Temp") & Application.PathSeparator & objFilename), vbDirectory) = vbNullString Then
objFolderItem.InvokeVerb ("Paste")
End If
' // add each Font as a resource in Excel
AddFontResource Environ("Temp") & Application.PathSeparator & objFilename
Next objFont

' fixes Excel 2013 update fonts issue
Application.ScreenUpdating = False: ActiveSheet.Select: Application.ScreenUpdating = True

' // clean up
Set objFont = Nothing
Set objShell = Nothing

End Sub

' // remove the Font resource upon closing the Workbook
Private Sub Workbook_BeforeClose(Cancel As Boolean)

' // vars
Dim objFont As OLEObject
Dim objFilename As String

' // loop the OLE objects in the "fonts" Worksheet
For Each objFont In Worksheets("fonts").OLEObjects
' // set the Filename
objFilename = objFont.Name
' // remove the resource
RemoveFontResource Environ("Temp") & Application.PathSeparator & objFilename
Next objFont

' // clean up
Set objFont = Nothing

End Sub

And that's it! Now run the Private Sub Workbook_Open() and you should have the font embedded.

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