[Fix] Taskbar Clock Colon Missing in Windows 10

After changing or substituting the system fonts with a different font, you may notice that the colon symbol may be missing in the taskbar clock. Instead of the colon punctuation mark, a different symbol (e.g., a square or rounded white box) may appear in the tray clock. Despite this issue, fonts in the other areas of the user interface may appear fine.

taskbar clock font colon punctuation square box
Tray clock showing a wrong symbol in place of the colon.

Need a Workaround? If you don’t want to restore the default font settings and need to continue using a non-system font as the default, you can still get back the colon symbol. For more information, see the Workaround section below.

Cause

This issue happens if you’ve changed the default system fonts — especially Segoe UI Symbol (TrueType) or Segoe UI (TrueType) to Segoe UI Black, Arial, or a third-party font. Many people face this issue after inadvertently changing the default system fonts using a third-party tweaker program. The chosen font may be missing the Unicode U+2236 symbol, which represents the colon character.

Windows uses a font called Segoe UI for its user interface. You can easily revert to the default fonts to resolve the tray clock incorrect symbol issue.

[Fix] Taskbar Clock Colon Missing in Windows 10

To restore the default font settings in Windows 10, choose any one of the following methods:

Fix the font settings using a Registry file

  1. Copy the following lines and paste them into Notepad:
    Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00
    
    ;Restore the default font mappings in Windows 10
    [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Fonts]
    "Segoe MDL2 Assets (TrueType)"="segmdl2.ttf"
    "Segoe Print (TrueType)"="segoepr.ttf"
    "Segoe Print Bold (TrueType)"="segoeprb.ttf"
    "Segoe Script (TrueType)"="segoesc.ttf"
    "Segoe Script Bold (TrueType)"="segoescb.ttf"
    "Segoe UI (TrueType)"="segoeui.ttf"
    "Segoe UI Black (TrueType)"="seguibl.ttf"
    "Segoe UI Black Italic (TrueType)"="seguibli.ttf"
    "Segoe UI Bold (TrueType)"="segoeuib.ttf"
    "Segoe UI Bold Italic (TrueType)"="segoeuiz.ttf"
    "Segoe UI Emoji (TrueType)"="seguiemj.ttf"
    "Segoe UI Historic (TrueType)"="seguihis.ttf"
    "Segoe UI Italic (TrueType)"="segoeuii.ttf"
    "Segoe UI Light (TrueType)"="segoeuil.ttf"
    "Segoe UI Light Italic (TrueType)"="seguili.ttf"
    "Segoe UI Semibold (TrueType)"="seguisb.ttf"
    "Segoe UI Semibold Italic (TrueType)"="seguisbi.ttf"
    "Segoe UI Semilight (TrueType)"="segoeuisl.ttf"
    "Segoe UI Semilight Italic (TrueType)"="seguisli.ttf"
    "Segoe UI Symbol (TrueType)"="seguisym.ttf"
    
    ;Remove the font substitutes, if any.
    [HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\FontSubstitutes]
    "Segoe UI"=-
    "Segoe UI Symbol (TrueType)"=-
  2. Save the file with a .reg extension — e.g., trayclock.reg
  3. Double-click trayclock.reg to apply the settings to the registry.
  4. Once done, restart Windows for the change to take effect.

This restores the default font settings in Windows 10, which should restore the taskbar clock’s colon punctuation mark.


Fix the font settings via the Registry Editor

To manually fix the issue using the registry editor, follow these steps:



  1. Start the Registry Editor by running regedit.exe
  2. Go to the following branch:
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Fonts
  3. Find the value named Segoe UI Symbol (TrueType) and set its data to seguisym.ttf
  4. Similarly, inspect the following registry values and fix them if required:
    Value name Data
    Segoe MDL2 Assets (TrueType) segmdl2.ttf
    Segoe Print (TrueType) segoepr.ttf
    Segoe Print Bold (TrueType) segoeprb.ttf
    Segoe Script (TrueType) segoesc.ttf
    Segoe Script Bold (TrueType) segoescb.ttf
    Segoe UI (TrueType) segoeui.ttf
    Segoe UI Black (TrueType) seguibl.ttf
    Segoe UI Black Italic (TrueType) seguibli.ttf
    Segoe UI Bold (TrueType) segoeuib.ttf
    Segoe UI Bold Italic (TrueType) segoeuiz.ttf
    Segoe UI Emoji (TrueType) seguiemj.ttf
    Segoe UI Historic (TrueType) seguihis.ttf
    Segoe UI Italic (TrueType) segoeuii.ttf
    Segoe UI Light (TrueType) segoeuil.ttf
    Segoe UI Light Italic (TrueType) seguili.ttf
    Segoe UI Semibold (TrueType) seguisb.ttf
    Segoe UI Semibold Italic (TrueType) seguisbi.ttf
    Segoe UI Semilight (TrueType) segoeuisl.ttf
    Segoe UI Semilight Italic (TrueType) seguisli.ttf
    Segoe UI Symbol (TrueType) seguisym.ttf

    taskbar clock font colon punctuation square box - default font settings registry

    If some of the entries don’t exist, you’ll need to create them manually. The value type is REG_SZ (String value.)

  5. Then, go to the following branch:
    HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\FontSubstitutes
  6. Delete the following values if found:
    Segoe UI Symbol (TrueType)
    
    Segoe UI (TrueType)
  7. Exit the Registry Editor.
  8. Restart Windows for the change to take effect.

taskbar clock font colon punctuation square box

The colon symbol in the taskbar clock is now restored!


Workaround

Here is an additional registry editing tip that works for most users. You don’t need to restore the default system font settings.

  1. Open the Registry Editor (regedit.exe) and go to the following key:
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER\ControlPanel\International
  2. Double click on sShortTime
  3. Open up Character Map (charmap.exe) and switch to Unicode
  4. Search for the word “colon” and click Search.
    taskbar clock colon missing - charmap unicode
  5. Choose the last one that shows up (U+A789: Modifier Letter Colon)
  6. Copy that and replace the colon in the sShortTime string in the Registry Editor.
  7. Exit the Registry Editor.
  8. Log off and log back in if necessary.

(Alternately, you can use a different separator other than the colon. You can do so via Control Panel → Region → Change date, time, or number formats → Additional Settings → ‘Time’ tab. Then change the separator until you get something that shows up. You can quickly bring up this dialog by running the command intl.cpl via the Run dialog.)


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Ramesh Srinivasan is passionate about Microsoft technologies and he has been a consecutive ten-time recipient of the Microsoft Most Valuable Professional award in the Windows Shell/Desktop Experience category, from 2003 to 2012. He loves to troubleshoot and write about Windows. Ramesh founded Winhelponline.com in 2005.

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