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PDF-export of german letters (ä, ö, ß) creates only question-marks


I'm having a problem with the pdf-export of pages containing letters from the german alphabet (ä, ö, ü and ß).
They get exported into question-marks (?) on the pdf.

I'm aware of the option to upload a custom font (from this help-page).
I tried it with several, from the web, from google-fonts and from my computer (win), but sadly no font did work.

There's no custom CSS, footer or header configured.


I would be very grateful if somebody could help me : )

Confluence as well as the database is (as recommended by atlassian) configured to use UTF-8. Everything gets displayed correctly on the actual confluence-page.Screenshot 2021-12-10 220030.png

2 answers

1 vote
Bill Bailey Community Leader Dec 11, 2021

Das ist ein größes Problem! ;-)

Just as an FYI, we have been using the Scroll PDF explorer, and routinly need to use special characters (mainly Greek). As long as we pick a font with unicode support, we have not had issues.

Of ocourse, it is a paid plugin.

thank's for the reply.

But I don't want to use a paid plugin for a function that should work in the regular install : )

Bill Bailey Community Leader Dec 12, 2021

Hello @Louis D , I understand. Are you using the same fontface in the PDF as your display CSS?

And have your tried NOT uploading a special font? Those characters are standard unicode and are available in almost every modern font.

You may also be able to call google fonts from the PDF style sheet, rather than a locally stored one.

And I saw this note:

  • Changes to the PDF layout only apply to space exports, not to single page exports (via  > Export to PDF).  

the display-font is still the default one (I haven't changed it).
On my system (Chrome, Win10)  it get's resolved to the "Segoe UI Font".
I tried this one as well, unfortunately no luck there either.

And yes, my first try used the default export-font without any modifications.
Same result.

I don't think the problem is the font or the application of the font (as the export is always using my selected/uploaded font). So the note you found is interesting, but isn't affecting the "PDF Export Language Support"-setting.

Although my problem does not seem to be there : /

0 votes
Fabian Lim Community Leader Dec 10, 2021

Hi @Louis D

Welcome to the community!

There is another thread here with another workaround that may help:


thank you for the reply.

I'm aware of this post, but altogether the solution there is also only a custom font.
I don't think there's a difference between the custom font via the custom CSS and the custom-font setting in the admin-panel, but I had tried it anyway.
Unfortunately I haven't had success with either method.

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