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Corrupt fonts on Mac System Dialog Boxes

Posted on 2014-10-10
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Last Modified: 2014-10-15
I've got a client with a new MacBook Pro who is having issues with system dialog boxes and corrupt fonts.  Text on system dialog boxes show up as empty boxes (see attached image for example.)  

Here's everything we've tried:
Validated all fonts in FontBook
Cleared all font caches with Onyx
Cleared all font caches with FontNuke
Changed system and application default fonts with TinkerTool
Verified/repaired disk permissions
Verified boot disk

Does anyone have other suggestions?

Thank you.
Mac-Corrupted-Fonts.png
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Question by:jtgerdes
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by:strung
ID: 40374761
Have you checked the language and region settings in the system preferences to make sure they are set to English?
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by:strung
ID: 40374762
Do they all show up as A's in boxes as per your screen shot?
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by:strung
ID: 40374764
Also, did you try clearing the PRAM?

Do a cold boot holding down the command-option-p-r key combination until you hear the boot chime a third time.
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by:strung
ID: 40374766
You could also type

sudo atsutil databases -remove

in terminal to remove font caches.
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by:jtgerdes
ID: 40378534
strung,

I tried switching the language to another language and rebooting, but the system dialog boxes still show up as those boxes.

I tried running that command in Terminal and rebooting, but I get the same thing.

I tried resetting the PRAM, but I get the same thing.

Any other thoughts?

Thanks.
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by:strung
ID: 40378594
Does this happen on all system dialogue boxes? What about menus?
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by:strung
ID: 40378596
Is the MacBook running Mavericks? Does it have all the updates?
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strung earned 500 total points
ID: 40378602
You probably have to replace the Lucinda Grande font.
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Author Comment

by:jtgerdes
ID: 40378632
It happens on any system dialog boxes that asks for admin-level permissions to install a program, change a system preference, etc.   Other dialog boxes - like the shutdown, restart, etc. - are fine.  Menus are fine.  The user's account is an admin account; there aren't other user accounts on the system.

It is running the latest version of Mavericks with all updates installed.

I will try investigating the Lucida Grande font specifically and post back with results.
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by:strung
ID: 40378663
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by:jtgerdes
ID: 40382157
I removed LucidaGrande.ttc from both ~/Library/Fonts/ and /System/Library/Fonts/ and copied a working copy of Lucida Grande from another MacBook Pro into /System/Library/Fonts/.  I cleared the font cache and rebooted, and all the dialog boxes seemed fine so far.

Thanks.
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