Stack OverflowProgramming Fonts
[+102] [44] whatknott
[2009-01-27 20:49:56]
[ fonts ]

What's your preferred programming font?

There's an existing question [1] like this. However, there are over 100 answers, most of which are just, "+1 MyFontOfChoice, blah, blah, blah". No offense to others involved in that post, but I was hoping we could get a more organized set of responses.



Consolas [2]

Must use ClearType or it looks terrible.

(1) Isn't this a duplicate of:… ? - Outlaw Programmer
(11) @Outlaw Programmer - Yes it is. I actually explained that and had a link to that question in my post :) - whatknott
(1) While it may be easier to re-run it, this is a PERFECT example of the wiki style of the site. It would have been FAR better to clean up the old question and answers than duplicating it. Voting for close as EXACT DUPLICATE. - Adam Davis
Agreed with Adam. Edit the old question/answer, don't add new cruft. - George Stocker
(6) just arguing my case. yes, the other question is similar, but i don't see how it's possible to clean up the question and 100+ answers to conform to the rules of this post. for example, for the number one answer on the other question, do people like consolas or andale mono? you can't tell. - whatknott
(1) maybe what i'm looking for out of this question is more of a "poll" rather than a question and answer. - whatknott
(7) Gotta agree with whatknott - this is a "poll" type question done right, i.e. so that the voting system will actually tell us something - Jonik
here's a great article on CodeProject about programming fonts... - whatknott
Some people like anti-aliased fonts, some like the clear but pixelated look of bitmapped fonts. The answers to this question are a great way to determine which you prefer. - Mark Ransom
@Jonik, et al. What, exactly do you hope to get out of this? The font I use is the one I like. Why would I care what font you use? I mean imagine it, "Oh wow! Consolas really rocked this poll?" And the point is? @Mark: The way I pick my fonts is by looking at them. Not by what world+dog thinks. - Chris Lively
(1) @Chris What about discovery of new fonts? Have you seen and tried all the fonts in the answers? - whatknott
(2) If you already know the font you like best, and don't care what others use, just ignore this question; that shouldn't be too hard. Someone else might find something useful here. (For example, I wasn't even aware of Consolas (not being a Windows developer) before checking out the top-voted answers here.) - Jonik
belongs on programmers.SE - Lightness Races in Orbit
[+164] [2009-01-27 20:50:14] whatknott [ACCEPTED]

Consolas [1]

Must use ClearType or it looks terrible.

Consolas example


(15) Consolas is the only font which I rate above Courier New for programming. Mostly, I like it because it has a good height:width ratio and it doesn't remind me of DOS. :-) - Ben Blank
(1) Wow, I never saw that before ... just switched, thanks! - Jess
ditto. at 10pt. I also run a yellow on navy color scheme when the IDE supports it. Easier on the eyes. - Bob Probst
(3) Consolas is great - except when you using a Remote Desktop session - then ClearType turns off. Oh the humanity it looks bad. - rein
I have moved from Proggy Clean, cool! - Anonymous
(4) I spoke to Kevin Larson of Microsoft's Typography group about this font a few years ago at a conference (HCI 2006), here is one way they've used to determine whether a font is better than another- - RichardOD
Looks a lot like Lucida Console, which I usually use. I'll try that Consolas out :) - Wadih M.
(1) I love Consola's italic. What's even better: all four styles have the same metrics. - bendin
I do like Consola. - Paul Nathan
I dislike Consolas simply because of how ClearType butchers it. At small font sizes (like you use), w looks like a blurry, colored v, and {} and () become nearly indistinguishable. - Alex Feinman
(2) I personally use 11px size because Consolas seems to shrink text more than most fonts. 11px looks like 10 in most other fonts. - Sasha Chedygov
@RichardOD - Thanks for the link to the Font Aesthetics article. - Alan
Switching now. If anyone else wants it, found this link from MS:… - IPX Ares
(1) Also second the Rein comment... without ClearType it looks horrible, but with it... spot on. - IPX Ares
Even with cleartype this font looks rubbish. I'm looking for the MAx OSX anti-aliasing. Something like: - Dominic Bou-Samra
8pt all the way for me, as I like to fit as much code on screen as I can at any one time. - Bryan
I spent a lot of time trying various fonts after being inspired by the "Progamming Fonts", Dec 16, 2004 post on "Coding Horror". I searched and searched with the goal of trying each font for at least a week. Many fonts didn't last a coding session. I mixed and matched trying different fonts at different times. I always ended up going to "Consola" (which was just released and why I was checking fonts) and "Courier New" (which I been using since first released). I liked "Anonymous", but it was too wide and high for my liking and always seemed to be crowed by the toolwindows of Visual Studio. - AMissico
Looks nice - giving it a whirl. Eight point and yes, without ClearType, it's -really- bad :-) - Blank Xavier
The text was smaller but I didn't gain any extra characters on the screen. Also The 1 and l were too similar. I just switched back to dejavu sans mono. - dwidel
(1) Although it is a MS font, it looks even better on OS X. It is the only font I like even better than Monaco on a Mac. - user287424
[+64] [2009-01-27 21:21:22] Tom Lokhorst

Monaco [1]

Wikipedia article [2]



(1) +1 looks extremely stylish - Iraimbilanja
(2) I use this on Windows - - Lucas Jones
(1) Oh - a picture if you want -, second one down. - Lucas Jones
Yea love this one with Visual Studio Settings: Brad Wilson Dark Visual Studio ( - BigBlondeViking
This is my favorite font. I use it in Xcode and TextMate on Mac OS X. - Jacob Relkin
I tried it with NetBeans and the line spacing was smaller than the font height :-/ - fortran
There are converted versions that work on Windows and Linux, but it looks right only on OS X. - user287424
This is my favourite font. I use IntelliJ on a 24" monitor with 3 editors side by side on OSX. I prefer to have 90 chars width for each editor, which means I need to use a 10pt font. This is the only font that looks good at 10pt in IntelliJ. I have tried them all. Consolas 11pt comes close but its a bit blurry. - reckoner
[+57] [2009-02-27 04:41:50] dt.

DejaVu Sans Mono [1]

DejaVu Sans Mono example


I love this font. I use it now. ClearType makes it look so sexy. - Scott Anderson
+1 My favourite font! - rebus
[+39] [2009-02-27 05:10:43] hazexp

Inconsolata [1]

Inconsolata example


This looks almost like a monospaced comicsans... - Omar Kooheji
Perhaps comic sans was meant to be monospaced...I like this font. - Thomas Owens
(1) If you don't care for the smart-quotes, check out Inconsolata-dz:… - Telemachus
(1) As good as consolas, but free! - zaius
very good altough too blurry for me with ClearType. Awesome with Linux/OSX rendering, however. - Hernán
small range of Unicode chars is supported - Max
[+30] [2009-01-27 21:20:04] mkClark

Courier New [1]

And a big high-resolution monitor.

Courier New


So little love for that one - MPelletier
(6) It hurts, it hurts. - Tegeril
(1) This one is a classic, and as such deserves a little more love. +1 from me. - Mark Ransom
P.S. I love that it doesn't try to beat you over the head with the difference between oh and zero. It could use a little better differentiation between el and one though. - Mark Ransom
(3) I find this font too wide: it wastes horizontal real-estate. - Adrian Pronk
@Adrian, the width was designed for 10 character per inch typewriter standards. While it's a little wider than necessary, at least it's easy to read. - Mark Ransom
[+28] [2009-01-27 21:28:57] Ates Goral

Lucida Console [1]

Lucida Console


(3) The short upper case characters really bug me in this font, check out the "Th" - that's why I prefer Lucida Sans Typewriter. - Mark Ransom
(2) Yes, it can be hard to distinguish between, for example, O and o in this font. - Thomas
I love that one. - Wadih M.
This is a great font. Very readable and takes minimal vertical space, but is very wide. - NateS
[+28] [2009-01-27 21:40:23] Chad Birch

Droid Sans Mono [1]



I was about to post that :D! It is a good font for ClearType/AA though. - Lucas Jones
(2) It really bugs me that the bold characters are not the same width as the regular characters though. Makes it totally unsuitable for programming in my opinion. - ptomato
(2) One of the most disappointed is the 0 and O. It looks the same when you spend hours to code :) - nXqd
This font becomes perfect when dash or dot is added to 0. Download at - Max
[+27] [2009-01-27 21:21:28] huitseeker

Bitstream Vera Sans Mono [1]

Bitstream Vera Sans Mono


(15) Try DejaVu - same look, but covers much of Unicode - Iraimbilanja
Good comment. Create a post for DejaVu! - whatknott
(2) Sweet 0's on this font - bobobobo
(2) I don't like the aspect ratio: too tall and skinny. - Adrian Pronk
Exact copy of DejaVu Sans Mono, except underlines are 1 pixel shorter - Which means that '__' doesn't blend together like in DejaVu. I like this slightly better. - Core Xii
This is what github uses. - ssg
[+20] [2009-01-27 21:37:25] Michael Burr

Envy Code R [1]

By Damien Guard.

alt text


I've been using this one and I really like it. The ells and ones are just different enough, good width-to-height so you get a lot of text at once, and I really like the shape of the curly braces. - CodexArcanum
I've used this one before, too. It's a close second to Deja Vu Sans Mono for me. - Scott Anderson
Yeah, this one's highly underrated, in my opinion. I actually liked it enough to switch away from Consolas, and that's saying something. - bcat
If you don't like it at first, try one size up or down - it makes quite a difference to the way the font renders. - CAD bloke
(1) This one looks much better in smaller size . I love its bracket :) - nXqd
This font looks great. I've tried a lot of alternatives (Proggy, Terminus, ...) but still, this gives me best readability so far. It has very nice bold variants. - xaralis
[+19] [2009-02-27 03:52:19] ryeguy

Proggy Tiny [1] proggy tiny


(1) I like this one a lot. Clean, crisp, and easily readable. - cloudymusic
What editor are you using there? - bobobobo
That's Visual Studio 2008. - ryeguy
(1) thats cute. i just wish they had an easy way to do reverse type like this yet still be able to copy text and paste it into an email and not have it all come out white! - Simon_Weaver
This is NOT CRT friendly. =] - strager
it's not LCD friendly either, since LCD spends most power in creating the color black :) - ssg
[+16] [2009-06-17 16:24:09] dtb

Liberation Mono [1]

Font Sample


I use it with QtCreator, like it very much,. - Hernán
I hadn't seen this one before, it is extremely nice! - NateS
[+13] [2009-01-27 21:38:48] Nietzche-jou

Terminus [1]

Good Unicode coverage, distinct "0O1Il|", bold variant, and bitmapped, so none of that blurry crap.



Very nice font for programming under vim or using a terminal in general. - new123456
[+11] [2009-01-27 20:53:39] whatknott

Andale Mono [1]

Andale Mono example


[+11] [2009-01-27 21:25:11] Greg Hewgill

Proggy Clean [1]

Proggy fonts are available in Bitmap, TrueType, PCF, and Mac formats.

Proggy Clean font example


[+11] [2009-02-27 01:10:43] Dustin Getz

Dina [1]

Proggy derivative



The largest size is 10pt, so I have to fall back on Terminus when I want 12pt. - user287424
[+11] [2010-10-08 21:51:04] Russell Borogove

Luxi Mono [1]

I have a weird liking for serifed monospace, and I find Courier unattractive. The letterforms in Luxi are reminiscent of old DOS text-mode. No slash or dot on the zero, unfortunately.

alt text


nice answer! i normally prefer sans serifed, but I'm going to have to try this one. answers like this are exactly why i like this question :) - whatknott
Neato! Actually, it reminds me of my dad's old SunOS box. - rescdsk
Very nice, but looks horrible at smaller sizes, especially without ClearType - Pumbaa80
[+9] [2009-06-17 16:03:20] bendin

6x13 [1]

It's a bitmap font available only on X-Windows, but similar to 9pt Monaco bitmap from the Macs of yore.



It's my font of choice for Emacs under X11. For more modern tools, I prefer Consolas wherever I can get sub-pixel anti-aliasing. - bendin
urxvt for me (6x13 is the default, I'm pretty sure) - Jon
Yeah, that's a classic. - ChrisV
This is the awesome sauce. In fact it is so epic you can have it in windows anyway! - TokenMacGuy
[+8] [2009-06-19 14:31:28] Alan

Monofur [1]

It's a bit unusual and doesn't look very console-y, but comes with real italics.

I'm strange like that.



Monofur is great fun. I use it sometimes in putty or, when I'm in the mood for something different. - bendin
"real italics": that's why I like Consolas. I don't find Monofur's italics all that convincing, and the lack of a true "bold" is unfortunate. - bendin
"Non-real" italics is more commonly called "oblique". More modern font names use this term but unfortunately people have this impression than "italics" means leaning to the right a little bit. - dreamlax
it looks a lot like a design font instead :D - nXqd
[+7] [2009-02-27 01:50:42] Eddie Jesinsky

Pragmata [1]

Costs 90 euros.
9pt is ideal.


There is now a fundraising project going on for PragmataPro [2] (which covers a larger portion of Unicode than Pragmata) to make it available for free under a Creative Commons license!


(4) 90 euros for a single font? Yikes! - cloudymusic
(8) !!! For €90 each shape better be made up of naked flexible girls! But that wouldn't be very pragmatic, would it? - P Daddy
There is now a fundraising project going on for PragmataPro (which covers a larger portion of Unicode than Pragmata) to make it available for free under a Creative Commons license:… . - Cetin Sert
[+7] [2009-02-27 04:41:23] megabytephreak

ProFont [1]



[+7] [2009-06-19 14:01:20] drewh

Anonymous Pro [1]

alt text


Nice answer! I have never seen this font before. - whatknott
(2) The apparently arbitrary use of serifs would drive me crazy. - dash-tom-bang
Doesn't support some characters, like ë. - Drasill
[+7] [2009-08-12 13:55:21] nego

Montecarlo [1]

A variant of the crystal clear ProFont but with more balanced looking 'A's and a dedicated boldface.



[+6] [2009-01-27 21:36:02] Mark Ransom

Lucida Sans Typewriter [1]

$75 for four fonts (regular, bold, italic, bold-italic), or $20 for just one.

Was included for free with some Microsoft products [2].

Lucida Sans Typewriter


0 and O look the same to me which makes it a bad choice for programming. - dwidel
@dwidel, I prefer my 0 not have any strange decoration so for me that's a feature. It comes down to personal preference. The difference between 0 and O is subtle but it exists - the zero is slightly narrower. - Mark Ransom
[+5] [2010-06-22 12:46:12] whatknott

Mensch [1]


(1) Not as good as it first appears. The height hinting is kind of messed up on some of the characters that were modified from the original font. - Mike Daniels
I like it a lot so far. I've not noticed any height issues. - EndangeredMassa
This font would be perfect if the L didn't look like a one! Plus a couple other issues. Otherwise, its my favorite - xj9
[+3] [2009-02-27 01:00:59] Paul Robinson

Panic Sans [1]

Included in the wonderful for other-reasons-too, Coda [2].


very similar to Bitstream Vera Sans Mono (…) - whatknott
[+3] [2009-02-27 01:36:28] mikez302

Verdana [1]

Easy to read at small sizes



(1) Verdana was designed to be readable at small sizes, but it's really ugly at large sizes IMHO. Tahoma is the compressed version if you need to pack a lot in. I prefer monospaced fonts for programming but that's a personal decision. - Mark Ransom
[+3] [2010-03-27 16:13:58] Michael Madsen

MS Gothic

Standard Windows font for Japanese. Immune to ClearType, so crisp rendering is guaranteed.

MS Gothic, 10pt

Main disadvantage is that, because it's a Japanese font, a backslash will be rendered as ¥. Once you get used to it, however, it's not really a problem - at least not if you don't actually NEED the ¥ sign, since it might be a bit confusing if you do.

lol, the explanation about the backslash at the end is so cute - Claudiu
[+2] [2009-01-27 21:07:03] David Grant

I'd recommend taking a look at the Programming Fonts [1] post on Coding Horror. It has plenty of recommendations with screenshots too.


(9) Great link but could we get it added as a comment to the question and keep posts specific to a single font? - whatknott
[+2] [2009-02-27 05:44:17] smcameron

I'm old. I like my fonts monospaced and big, My default gnometerm uses monospace 16. Subtleties of antialiasing and what not are lost on me.

I generally use the maximize button and make the terminal window fill the whole screen, have several of these going at once, of different background colors (I rigged a taskbar icon to start gnome terms with a different color each time it's clicked) and use alt-tab to switch between these, which works pretty well.

In my younger days, I'd often set up four windows taking up a quarter of the screen each, but my eyes these days prefer one big window covering the whole screen.

Getting old sucks. At least the tools accommodate this particular weakness.

I think responses aren't terribly useful if they don't include information about the screens used and the eyesight involved. Speaking as someone partway to geezerhood (I'm 43), I point and laugh at anyone silly enough to think a 10-point font is useful for anything at all, much less coding. - James Moore
[+1] [2009-01-27 21:04:59] assplecake

Comic Sans [1]

Comic Sans


??? Why'd this get downvotes - GeoffreyF67
(2) I think this was downvoted because it is a joke. Or at least I hope so. - Sergio Acosta
(8) Comic Sans is actually the default font for comments in Notepad++... - Thomas
(1) "or it looks terrible" is worth a downvote. To be serious though, Comic Sans isn't a bad choice if you like variable spaced fonts; it passes the O0 1lI test, but it's an acquired taste. - Mark Ransom
@Thomas Which drives me right up the wall. I always change it. =) - anonymous coward
(1) @Mark Ransom: also a few people will see your monitor with the font on it and start screaming at you (see bancomicsans ). - Claudiu
(1) @Claudiu: when I said it's an acquired taste, I didn't say I had acquired it. Unfortunately it's my wife's favorite font, so I can't bash it too much. - Mark Ransom
LULz for going there. - CAD bloke
[+1] [2009-06-17 16:12:24] bendin

Syntax [1] (Oberon version) was a font I really loved when I used to program in Oberon [2] on DEC and later Ceres-3 [3] workstations, but then Oberon's an oddity as source was written in a rich-text editing environment with proportional fonts.

The Syntax bitmap that came with Oberon had italics with far more flair than the official outline font version from Linotype.


[+1] [2009-08-13 15:52:01] whatknott

Akkurat Mono [1]

180 Swiss francs (almost $170!)

Akkurat Mono


[+1] [2009-12-11 20:32:21] whatknott

Share TechMono [1]

Share TechMono


[+1] [2010-08-20 04:46:03] whatknott

Triskweline [1] Triskweline


[+1] [2010-08-20 12:34:26] whatknott

Adaptive Code [1]

costs $20



[0] [2009-01-27 20:53:06] Cal


16 px


(3) I love filled boxes! :) - Lucas Jones
Someone beat me to it! - J. Polfer
This was my default font in VB6 for years. - Michael Itzoe
Welcome to Windows 2.0 - ssg
[0] [2010-08-20 12:24:02] whatknott

Crystal [1]



[0] [2010-08-20 12:25:55] whatknott

Onuava [1]



[0] [2010-09-24 13:12:49] whatknott

Arial Monospaced [1]

costs $20

arial monospaced


[0] [2011-08-04 08:48:56] NateS

Lava mono [1]

Lava Mono 1

Lava Mono 1

8pt raster font based on Bitstream Vera Sans Mono, hand tweaked at this size for programming. It also has minimal width and minimal spacing between lines, allowing for more lines on screen in both directions than almost any other font.


[0] [2011-09-02 15:54:55] whatknott

Selectric [1]



[-3] [2009-06-22 13:54:28] Gautam

I take back my comment on 10pt Courier as I have fully switched over to 10pt Consolas.

So much easier to use/read :)

[-3] [2009-08-13 17:19:31] CodeYun

For VS developers you can reference the following themes, some of them are very pretty. Visual Studio Programmer Themes Gallery [1]


[-8] [2009-02-27 02:11:38] C. Dragon 76

I prefer syntax highlighting that supports multiple fonts in multiple sizes. Editors like Source Insight and even Notepad++ allow you to customize syntax highlighting not only by text color, but also by the font family and font size.

You can do things like make class declarations and member declarations a larger font size to stand-out a little and make comments a different font family to blend into the background and look less like code.

EDIT: Adding picture. Note how varying the font faces and font sizes make comments, function names, literals, etc. stand out from one another even more than just differentiating by color does. Sadly, Stack Overflow has resized my screenshot, but I think it looks quite nice at full resolution on a big monitor. alt text

(1) Multiple fonts and multiple sizes? gaaak! - Blank Xavier