Hi guys!
It's been a while since I last posted here.

I'm having an issue with not being able to remove non-installed fonts.
Meaning, the fonts are not installed in the Windows/Fonts folder and cannot be uninstalled the proper way.
These fonts came with some kind of hidden-object game that my nephew used to play and got copied into the game folder (ie, not installed into windows), and got left behind after I uninstalled the game.
But for some reason windows still claim that they are in use and thus cannot be removed.

Sure. I can reboot and delete them after that.
But why should I have to do that when the fonts aren't even installed on a system level.

If anyone can provide me with either a solution and/or an explanation, that would be awesome.

When this happens to me I boot Safe Mode to try again. If a file (does not matter if it's a font or such) must go I boot up any of the current Linux Live CD/DVD/USB and get it done. No learning Linux. It's just boot, click around like Windows File Explorer, click on the file and press the delete key. Really old version of my answer is at http://tips.oncomputers.info/archives2004/0401/2004-Jan-11.htm

You don't say which version of windows, but if Windows "sees" your font, then it was installed in the Windows registry. To properly remove a font:
Win XP, 2K, 7-10: Control Panel and Fonts display all the "windows" fonts, or ask Cortana "fonts" (Win 8-10).
Right click on one and a menu appears and one choice is to delete it. Win 8.0 and 8.1 should be about the same. Win 7 and earlier will only access fonts thru the control panel. When you delete a font this way, Windows deletes the font file and removes it from the registry.
If you just delete the font file thru file manager, Windows will still thinks it's there because of the registry tells it so.
I suspect you deleted the font(s) by deleting the game including fonts. Because the registry reloads the font on bootup, Windows only choice is to report the font is in use (actually not there).
If you remember the Game's folder, search for that in the registry ("Regedit") and delete any line that references that directory name.
If you feel uncomfortable tackling the registry manually, I recomend "registry cleaning" software such as RegCure Pro ($50 - but a long enough free trial period to set yours straight). It's slow but very thorough. It will read each registry entry and if it loads a file, checks if the file exists - if not, the entry is removed.

Thanks for the replies. (This has happened to me in both Win7 and now on Win10).

I already knew that I can reboot and delete (as I stated in my OP). I was just hoping for an explanation as to why it happens.

Also. If the font was installed it would show up in Control Panel and Fonts, which by the way is the exact same thing as browsing to C:\Windows\Fonts if you didn't know.
But since the fonts I want to remove are not in there the explanation is that they are not actually installed. As I also said in my OP.
Oh, and also not in the registry.

My bet is the font is in the registry and was not found by you (yet.) I'm taking this as if this is a font showing up in other apps.

Why this happens is the app you installed used a non-standard way to add the font. As the method they used was not the usual way, we would be crystal ball users to guess what it did.

Best you can do is to use the tools, reboots and such to clean it up. Their uninstaller didn't clean it up so you are stuck with the mess they made.

Be a part of the DaniWeb community

We're a friendly, industry-focused community of developers, IT pros, digital marketers, and technology enthusiasts meeting, networking, learning, and sharing knowledge.