portableapp.com is a windows app that provides (besides a suite a portable apps) a workaround for installing fonts on a windows machine, without admin access. The work around is described in detail here:


This is a cool feature for those of us stuck on machines with depressed user privileges, that do not allow the use of fonts other that what Windows provides by default.

These fonts (installed through the means described above) are accessible perfectly on Word, Photoshop, etc.

However, LaTeX (Lualatex, Xelatex) is not able to detect these fonts when using the standard fontspec command.

The error message states: fontspec error: "font-not-found"

Is anybody aware of a workaround?

  • you can specify fonts by path and filename with fontspec so you should be able to specify whichever folder you are using for that application. Sep 5, 2018 at 16:12

2 Answers 2


LuaTeX and XeTeX can load fonts by path. The fontspec package provides a nice interface for this.


  Path = /path/to/MinionPro/,
  Extension = .otf,
  UprightFont = *-Regular,
  BoldFont = *-Bold,
  ItalicFont = *-It,
  BoldItalicFont = *-BoldIt]


Hello World!


This is the directory layout for the font:

├── MinionPro-BoldIt.otf
├── MinionPro-Bold.otf
├── MinionPro-It.otf
└── MinionPro-Regular.otf

As Henri Menke said, you want to download the font files into a directory and select them by filename using Path= and Extension=.

However, since you are on Windows and have no root directory, a pathname like that will not work. Any absolute pathname will break as soon as someone else tries to compile the document on their computer.

What you want to do is download the fonts into a subdirectory of your project folder, called (for example) fonts. Then, load your font with Path = ./fonts/. Make sure your build command is running from the project directory. This is portable to any OS.

You don’t need to go through any special rigmarole to install the fonts on your system. If you specify the exact filename and path, your TeX engine will be able to find it even though it is not installed as a system font. This is a great way to use a different version of a font already present on your system or in your TeX distribution.

So, something like:

  Path = ./fonts/ ,
  Extension = .otf ,
  UprightFont = *-Regular ,
  BoldFont = *-Bold ,
  ItalicFont = *-It ,
  BoldItalicFont = *-BoldIt]

This will search for ./fonts/MinionPro-Regular.otf, ./fonts/MinionPro-Bold.otf, and so on. Just downloading the files to the specified directory is enough.

To stay on the safe side, make the pieces of the name in your source file case-sensitive, even though they do not need to be on Windows.

It might be helpful to anyone else trying to compile your document to add a comment with a link to obtain the font.

Alternative solution: stick the font files in the same directory as your source files, don’t distribute them with your source (especially if their license does not allow it), specify a filename but not a Path =, and just require any other user to get a hold of them in order to compile. You could even throw in a conditional to use the non-standard font only if it is installed.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .