AutoCAD font overrides

Here is how to properly override (replace) font’s globally in Autodesk AutoCAD.

Why replace?

Unicode fonts

Depending on your version of AutoCAD the nordic characters for ÅÄÖÆØ might not be working properly. This is usually caused by different versions of the same font’s. For some reason it seems, the characters ÅÄÖÆØ were removed from iso.shx

Fortunately they’re still available in isocp.shx and it’s perfectly fine to replace each font one by one in every drawing. This gets tedious though if you have hundreds of drawings to plot.

Better performance

Another reason might be to get rid of demanding true type fonts commonly used in drawings. If someone uses advanced font’s in drawings this will use up a lot more graphics memory slowing down performance.

demanding fonts

How to replace

Start by locating the file acad.fmp in your AutoCAD support folder. Depending on your version and the user account in Windows this will be stored in different paths.

acad_fmp_path

To quickly find your windows account profile folder you can copy and paste this into the explorer address bar and press enter:

%appdata%\Autodesk\

Check the year release version of Autocad you have installed. Is it 2010, 2014, 2016 or some other year? If you’ve got an AutoCAD subscription you might have several versions installed. If you have 2016 you can copy and paste this into the explorer address bar and press enter:

%appdata%\Autodesk\AutoCAD 2016\R20.1\enu\Support

If you’re hopelessly lost attempting to locate this folder you can use a shortcut built into AutoCAD by clicking File -> Plot Style Manager. This will open the adjacent path where your plot styles are stored.

plot style path

Editing acad.fmp

Before proceeding, once you’ve located acad.fmp make a backup copy of it, just in case. Call it Copy of acad.fmp or something similar.

Open it using Notepad or any other plain text editor. (Not Microsoft Word). Once open it should look something like this:

acad.fmpACAD2016 original: acad.fmp (mirror)

Each new line in this file means one font replacement operation. The syntax for instructing which font to replace is separated by a semicolon ;

The original source font;The font which to replace it with

For example if we want to replace iso with isocp we add the following line. (This is the workaround for nordic characters to work.)

iso;isocp.shx

acad.fmp_edit Edited: acad.fmp (mirror)

For this to have any effect you need to restart AutoCAD completely. All done!

Resource intensive fonts

Consider adding more resource intensive fonts.

And don’t forget the pesky Comic Sans MS! We don’t want that in our drawings do we? 😉

acad.fmp_edit2 Edited 2: acad.fmp (mirror)

End notes

Please keep in mind that replacing font’s will cause external references XREF fonts to change as well. This will cause formatting issues, especially if the new font is larger than the original.

This is important to note in case something goes wrong and you’ve been accidentally messing with someone else’s drawing. To avoid this then restore the original acad.fmp file and restart AutoCAD before plotting.

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