Mamluk Bibliography Online | Configuring Browsers for Unicode

Mozilla Firefox

We recommend using FireFox to view this web site. We have had no trouble with Firefox and Unicode. It has historically been more flexible than Internet Explorer and is what we use to test the Mamluk Bibliography as we develop it, so it may be the best browser to use for viewing the Mamluk Bibliography. Firefox has never required that we change its font settings in order to view other sites. There are probably sites--or specific characters on certain sites--that would require changing these settings, but we have yet to encounter them.
Searching the web for information about configuring Firefox for Unicode will usually lead to useful information, though it might be a good idea to limit the search results to the past month or year in order to avoid outdated information. (At the top of Google's search results there are several choices, the last of which is "Search tools." Click on that, then click on "Any time" and select a span that makes sense.)

Our pages' code contains an instruction telling browsers to use Unicode (UTF-8), but if you want to configure this manually:

1. Go to the View menu, then choose Character Encoding.
2. Choose Unicode (UTF-8).

You may also have to to Tools > Options > Content > Fonts & colors and select a font that has the required diacritics. The simplest (for Windows users at least) is Arial Unicode MS. Not a pretty font, but has the glyphs needed.

After changing to UTF-8 encoding (and changing the default font, if necessary) you might still see nonsense symbols where diacritics should be. If so, you may need to clear your browser's cache to force it to reload the page instead of using one it has stored in memory. Do this by going to History > Clear recent history. BE CAREFUL! Before you click the Clear Now button, make sure to click the little arrow next to the word Details. UN-check everything except Cache. For time range select "Everything." Make sure nothing but "Cache" is selected. Then click Clear Now. When you reload the page all the text should appear correctly.

Internet Explorer

IE can be set to display all our text correctly, but we do not use it and have no information about how to configure recent versions. The steps are probably similar to Firefox, and a search of the web should turn up useful instructions.


We have not experimented with other browsers, and can not say which work best with Unicode.

For information about Unicode, enabling it on your computer, typing special characters and other useful tips (as well as suggestions for authors of articles), please see MEDOC's Unicode page:

Our instructions are not guaranteed to work on your computer, and are not guaranteed not to inhibit your browswer's ability to show other sites or cause other problems, but we have tested the above settings and found no major problems. Keep track of what your settings are BEFORE you make changes so it will be easier to change them back if necessary. Screenshots (pictures) of the various dialog boxes and menus involved can be very helpful, but taking notes on a piece of paper will also work if you remember to write down all the things you did.