Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Font Survey: 42 of the Best Monospaced Programming Fonts – CodeProject

By Hans Dietrich | 18 Aug 2010

This article presents commonly used programming fonts with examples of each font in ClearType and non-ClearType.


Recently I have seen several blogs talking about which fonts are best for use in programming. Some blogs list two or three fonts, some list ten fonts. But I knew there were more fonts than the ones I was reading about, so I decided to look around to see how many I could find.

Here are some of the things I look for in a programming font:

  • Easy to read - clear letters, with easily distinguishable punctuation
  • Monospaced - this really follows from the point above. Although I know some programmers who insist that Arial or Verdana can be used in an IDE or programming editor, I have only included fixed-width fonts in this survey.
  • Adequate whitespace - fonts that are too compressed are more difficult to read, and make it more difficult to catch errors
  • Differentiated similar letters (1 and l, zero and O) are easy to tell apart

The Fonts

The following table lists in alphabetical order the most commonly cited programming fonts. While many are free, there are some that are only available via purchase, for $US8 - $US150. For reference, you might want to look at the CodeProject list of best programming fonts.

I look at fonts no differently than I look at other programming tools - they are professional investments. I discourage illegal use or copying of fonts. If you find a font that you cannot live without, then you should buy it if it is sold commercially. The price of fonts amounts to only pennies per hour, when you add up all the time you will spend looking at it.

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