Problem

Chromium doesn’t show Chinese at all with default install of Crunchbang, as reported in this thread.

Solution

Inside that thread, the solution is provided. Basically:

sudo aptitude install ttf-wqy-zenhei or sudo aptitude install ttf-wqy-microhei

Explanation

The thing puzzled me the most is Firefox works OK without requiring any additional fonts installed. Therefore, I believe that there are Chinese fonts install on my box, and the question becomes: why can’t chromium use that font?

Find out the Chinese fonts installed on my box

  • fc-list :lang=zh

I have only Droid Sans installed by default, so I guess Firefox is using it, which is confirmed by the fact that Firefox can’t render Chinese characters after removing /usr/share/fonts/truetype/droid/ directory.

Why Chromium can’t use it

The reason is probably the answer to these two bug reports, which are listed in the reference.

Reference

Bug report Talks about this weird behavior of Chromium. Real culprit is the real reason why all this happens. Stack Overflow