[Solved] Chrome displays all text italic

A lot of text and links were displayed italic in Chrome on several webpages since a Windows 10 update. Firefox could display the text correctly. The problem occurred especially while on the WordPress administration pages, on the Chrome Web Store and the WhatsApp web interface.

A quick google learned that it could be caused by some extensions or a default font setting or even an experimental font setting in Chrome (DirectWire). Trying to change these options didn’t work for me. Then I started to inspect the code of those webpages. I found out that the text style wasn’t italic at all, meaning that it wasn’t changed incorrectly by extensions or default font settings or DirectWire.

I did notice however that all the italic text was the Google Font OpenSans font. It was included correctly in the web page but seemed corrupt in one way or the other. Then I searched for the font in my Windows Fonts directory and it seemed that the Open Sans font was installed locally as well, but only as an italic font.

It seems that Chrome uses locally installed fonts if they are available and completely ignores the included Google Fonts on the webpage. Even if a font variant is not available locally. Firefox handles this situation better by displaying the downloaded Google Font variant that is missing locally.

How to make the text appear normal in stead of italic

The solution is quite simple. Remove the locally installed OpenSans font. Make sure that you close Chrome first because it has the font in use and Windows won’t allow you to remove it

Font can't be deleted because it's in use

  1. Shut down Chrome (so that the font isn’t in use anymore)
  2. Go to Control Panel\Appearance and Personalisation\Fonts and remove the (italic-only) Open Sans font locally in your Windows Fonts directory
  3. Reopen Chrome.

I guess downloading all the Open Sans variants and install them locally would’ve helped as well.

Windows 10

While several people already have Windows 10 installed, my computer didn’t offer me that possibility yet. Searching on the Internet, I found several sites explaining how to force Windows update to download and install Windows 10 but none of these descriptions worked for me. I found out that one step was missing in my case: automatic installation of updates. My Windows Update was set up to automatically download updates but I chose the time of installation.

So in my case, the steps to perform were:

  1. Open Windows Update
  2. At the left, click “Change Settings”
  3. Make sure the selection menu under “Important Updates” says “Install updates automatically”, and make sure that under Recommended updates, the “Give me recommended updates the same way I receive important updates” option is checked.
  4. Remove all files in C:\Windows\SoftwareDistribution\Download
  5. Then, hit the windows key and type “cmd”. Right click the command prompt and choos for “Run as administrator”
  6. enter the command wuauclt.exe/updatenow. Don’t hit enter yet
  7. In the Windows Update window, click “Check for updates” on the left hand side.
  8. Immediately after that, hit enter in the command prompt, executing the command you previously entered

At this point, Windows Update started to download Windows 10.

However, after installation and preparing setup, the update failed and I ran into error 80240020 – which is quite known, so it seems. So I followed these steps to remove all downloaded files and re-downloaded everything.