In Windows Windows XP, Vista, or Windows 7, click the Start button, point to All Programs, point to Accessories, point to System Tools, and then click Character Map. If you are using Vista or Windows 7, you can simply click on Start, then type Character Map into the search box above the Start button and choose Character Map when it appears near the top of the list.

When the Character Map appers it will look like this:



Find the character that you want and click on it. This may be a foreign letter, a degree symbol, a registered trademark symbol, or many others. Then click Select and then click Copy. The symbol that you want will be copied to the Windows clipboard. Then you simply go back to your email program or your document and click on Edit, then Paste and the chosen symbol will appear in your document.

If you use that symbol a lot, you can also use its shortcut key to put it in any document without opening the Character Map every time you want to use that symbol.



You must use the numeric keypad rather than the numbers above the alphabet keys to enter the shortcut keystroke.

Make sure the NumLock for the numeric keypad is on. (It is a toggle key, pressing once will turn it on, pressing it again will turn it off.) Hold down the Alt key while you enter the numbers that represent that symbol. As you can see from the above screen shot, the cent key numbers are 0162. So for the cent sign you would enter 0162 on the numeric keypad. When you release the Alt key, the symbol will appear in your document.

Jot down that shortcut key. If you will use it a lot, memorize it or put it on a sticky note on your computer. Then go to the email or documentand put your cursor where you want the symbol to appear.

For more information check out my article entitled: Symbols & the Character Map