Caught the font inside of Windows (It wasn't me)

by Michael S. Kaplan, published on 2010/04/15 07:01 -04:00, original URI:

Apologies for the Shaggy reference, in truth the phrase should have been It wasn't US, but I was afraid of messing up the scansion....

Yesterday, Bogdan asked via the Contact link:

Dear Michael,

I noticed on your blog that you kept track of the "European Union" Expansion Font Update for Windows XP (and that you're actually involved with Microsoft as well), and I was wondering whether you could help me sort out a minor historical mystery.

Back in 2007 Microsoft released the EUupdate.EXE file which provided support for some proper Romanian and Bulgarian characters. I'm particularly interested in the Romanian characters (ş and ţ), but I suppose they all went together from then on. Anyway, that's the part I know already. Another related piece of data I'm aware of is that installing a fresh Windows XP installation today and applying all automatic updates also leads to support for those characters, without the need to apply the EUupdate.EXE patch explicitly.

What I don't know -- and this is what I'm hoping you could help me with -- is when that update made it into the automatic updates flow. I tried searching the net up and down for that particular bit of information, but I suppose that people who cared enough about this installed the EUupdate patch around the time it was published, and the people who don't care about the issue never noticed the change after an automatic update -- so basically nobody noticed this, and nobody talked about it.

I need this information for a paper I'm working on, and to be honest you're my best hope for an answer so far.

Kind regards from Bucharest,

Bogdan is right, between blogs like Even the characters with no weight can be given weight in their own special way and Update on the update to the update for Romanian and Bulgarian and Update⁴for Romanian and Bulgarian and others, I was tracking this update in all of its incarnations for a while there.

As a by-the-way, now there is not only the Romanian but also the Bulgarian translations of the download page available! :-)

If Bogdan is right then it would be kind of ironic that the download page work finally happened when the fonts were being updated in the latest versions of XP with all updates.

But after talking to some people here, it is not clear how the conclusion qabout the font work being done was reached.

The characters were already in many core fonts; the package's purpose was to make sure some additional fonts used in significant parts of the user interface (Verdana, Times New Roman, Arial, and Trebuchet MS). Perhaps what Bogdan was seeing is the C* ClearType fonts and Tahoma and Microsoft Sans Serif that had already been updated?

If that is not it, then it does not look like Windows did the update to XP, but perhaps some other product like Office may have done the update. The expansion pack was the official Windows solution to the problem, and Bob only knows who else might be at work here....

Michael S. Kaplan on 19 Apr 2010 1:05 PM:

I have been told a rumor from a usually reliable source who admitted that it may or may not be true that:

Pretty sure it was IE7 that was the non-Windows-Update method for getting that font patch.

This may or may not be true, use at your own risk, your mileage may vary....

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