I'm trying to convert HelveticaCY.dfont to a ttf font. The MacOS softs that I used didn't work well so I tried Fondu which gave me this files :


Unfortunately, the *.ttf files doesn't contain the special chars (such as é, è ...). My guess is that this chars are in the *.bdf files but I have no idea of how convert it to a ttf file...


As suggested, I used the Helvetica.dfont file. Here's the result : on the left, when I open the ttf file, on the right, when I use quick preview...

enter image description here

No accent on both side...

  • Unless you are writing Russian or other Cyrillic text, it is best to use another font. HelveticaCY (and others with CY at the end) are especially made to display Cyrillic script text and you risk running into problems when using them for Latin, such as missing characters. There is no reason the bdf files would have these instead of the ttf files. Sep 1, 2014 at 13:23
  • @TomGewecke thanks for the suggestion, I edited my question ;) Sep 1, 2014 at 13:38
  • What alphabet are you after?
    – Ruskes
    Sep 1, 2014 at 14:53
  • @Buscar웃 the latin one Sep 1, 2014 at 14:55
  • As @TomGewecke said the HelveticaCY is Cyrillic and not Latin. You can only convert it to the same alphabet in different file format (ttf). So again which alphabet are you after. Russian, Greek, German, English, others. The original has only 2 with accent ё й
    – Ruskes
    Sep 1, 2014 at 15:03

2 Answers 2


For converting file types (fonts) from Macs (.dfont) to TrueTypeFont (.ttf) that then can be used with Windows I recommend to use the DfontSplitter.

Convert Macintosh .dfont files into TTF format

However, converting file type will not add new characters, it will only convert the file type while the characters stay the same.

For Latin fonts the (special characters) and accents are keyboard feature and can be set in the keyboard system preferences.

I you have for example US keyboard and want to use the French accents like èé ÈÉ, set your keyboard to French.

But if you want to continue to the US keyboard and still need those characters, then use the:

1- Insert function from the (Characters viewer)

2- create a special function "Replace- With" in keyboard menu, then use a word to be replaced with the accent character. (now you just type the word and it will be replaced)

3- or another way is to use this method (while keeping your original keyboard layout:

: To get accented vowels on a Mac, hold down the Option key, and while holding it down, type the letter e; to get (é É) then release those keys and type the letter that you want the accent to appear on:

Press alt and e now release those keys and type the letter you want with accent.

4- Finally if you just hold the key pressed there should be a pop up allowing you to select the right accent for that letter.

So the choice is your what method suits you best.

  • @TomGewecke thanks, I was actually going to edit my answer, since there are multiple methods to do that.
    – Ruskes
    Sep 1, 2014 at 16:49

To type French characters you normally don't need to worry about the font. With the US keyboard layout, just hold down the key for the base character and choose the accented version from the popup menu that appears (10.7 and later) or use the standard option key shortcuts you can find at


You must log in to answer this question.

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