Chrome in Ubuntu is not rendering Urdu fonts properly. It is showing gibberish characters I'm not able to read. The problem is especially bad on Facebook.

I copied some Urdu fonts under ~/.fonts and under /usr/share/fonts/ and updated the cache and then restarted Chrome but even that didn't work.

This is how it is appearing on my system


I have installed MSCore fonts and many other fonts but it's still not working.


Download and install nafees-urdu fonts.

Update the package index:

sudo apt-get update

Install the fonts-nafees package:

sudo apt-get install fonts-nafees

and refresh your browser. This works fine for me.

or try this: http://www.urdujahan.com/linux.html

  • You mean restart your browser?
    – Mr.Shan0
    Aug 21 '19 at 9:43
  • No need just refresh the page, that should work
    – smali
    Aug 21 '19 at 12:28
  • 1
    Didn't work. I had to restart my browser. Using Ubuntu 18.04.
    – Mr.Shan0
    Aug 21 '19 at 12:51
  • 2
    Negative. Didnt work in 20.04. imgur.com/a/drvdTV4 May 3 '20 at 19:51

I installed fonts-noto

$ sudo apt-get -y install fonts-noto

Restarted Chrome, and then changed the Standard Font in Chrome to Noto Naskh Arabic UI. Urdu fonts appear much better and clear now. You can find the 'Font Settings' at: chrome://settings/fonts Font Preview Chrome Settings Preview

Update (for Firefox): You can change the fonts settings to Noto Sans Arabic UI in Firefox preferences Under Langugage and Appearance section

You can use this Chrome extension as well: https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/nastaleeq/oddbjmjgpaofommagnbfednbdifaakfb?hl=en

  • 1
    This is the best solution.
    – dmSherazi
    Jun 23 '19 at 6:01
  • This solution is Chrome specific. Can you suggest something for Firefox? Yes, on Chrome, it solved the problem. May 16 '20 at 19:00
  • @TahirAkram Have you tried changing the Preferences -> Language and Appearance -> Fonts and Colors -> Default Color to Noto Sans Arabic UI?
    – Junaid
    May 18 '20 at 11:20
  • Any ideas how to apply this solution to the WhatsApp desktop client on Linux Mint? It's an Electron app. Dec 7 '20 at 1:44
  • Haven't tried that. Did you look into changing system font to Noto Sans Arabic UI by using any font-tweak tool?
    – Junaid
    Dec 7 '20 at 11:09

What worked for me was was to go to

Menu → language settings

and install "full support for urdu language".

Then, in the Firefox browser, go to

Preferences → General → Language → Choose your preferred language for displaying pages

and change Latin to nafees.

  • This changed the default language of the browser but it will not change the font style. Oct 25 '20 at 19:14

Install tahoma fonts or install from your windows fonts directory /windows/Fonts

Install following chrome extension.

Font Changer With Google Fonts

Go to twitter or facebook or any other site and left click the extension. Use custom settings and select tahoma. Click ok and then refresh the page.

  • 2
    Some other fonts also works like segoe UI, you can add them in extension custom fonts settings. you can also add urdu fonts like jameel noori nastaleeq in custom fonts.
    – wedu
    Jan 30 '14 at 10:47

I think the problem is that Ubuntu does not have unicode Arial fonts. I just found a solution that is working well on Facebook .

First you need to install 'nafees fonts' for Ubuntu.

  1. Get the Chrome extension "change font family style" from Chrome store.
  2. Go to its settings, in tools > extensions
  3. Go to the extension's option.
  4. Paste this 'lucida grande',tahoma,verdana,nafees,sans-serif
  5. Click save, then close the window, and refresh the facebook page. it should work.
  • 1
    4. Where should I paste it I didn't understand? Oct 25 '20 at 19:09

Guys I also had this issue and fixed with chrome extension Nastaleeq.

Kubuntu 19.04 x64 Chrome Version: 77.0.3865.90 (Official Build) (64-bit)


Just go to chrome settings and search for customize fonts and change standard font to Nafees. No need to install anything.

  • Younus, it didn't work in Chrome. This is the screenshot. imgur.com/a/2KgSWTf I selected Nafees as standard font. Can you suggest the same for Firefox? May 16 '20 at 19:18
  • Not any experience with firefox about that. May 17 '20 at 7:12

Another Chrome extension that gave me better results is: Wudooh. After installation, you can select Noto Nastaliq Urdu from the drop-down menu. You also have the options for adjusting the font size as well as line height.

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