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Resources and notes for dealing with fonts in Linux. How to get and install the Microsoft True Type fonts.



Using Windows True Type Fonts

There seem to be several steps involved, I think I've accomplished two of them:

  • I've obtained the TTF font files and put them in a directory on a my Linux machine.
  • I used K -> Configuration -> KDE -> System -> Font Installer to install those fonts into KDE (I think)
  • Now I'm trying to find those fonts in the configuration menu of, for example, konqueror (Settings -> Configure Konqueror -> Fonts and, for example, Standard Font). They aren't listed there. Must I restart konqueror? (I have three more fonts to get, guess I'll get them via a floppy before I do anything like restart KDE.)

Ok, I found a post dated Wed, 2 Oct 2002 from Christopher Mahmood to a Suse mailing list (IIUC) which says: "I know nothing about kde or the way it handles fonts (or openoffice) but in general when you add new fonts you need to restart the X server or at least update the font path with xset."

So, I'll look forward to restarting the X server on this machine (System5), or get back to work on setting up Knoppix on System12, and see what happens. (It will be more convenient to restart the X server on that machine, so I'll try that first.)

Installing Windows True Type Fonts

On A Machine with Windows Installed

Assuming you have a Windows partition, go to drakconf. Then System -> Fonts -> Get Windows Fonts.

Or (on Mandrake 9.1 at least):

Control Center -> System -> Font Installer

... which also has capability to install from other machines over a network (or from a CD, etc.)

On a Network with other Windows Machines

I should have known there'd be some reason to regret wiping out the Windows partitions on some of my machines.

Maybe I can follow the same commands as above, but point the utility to a Windows partition on another machine? Yes, I should be able to.

Or, how about with the Windows CD? (Maybe I have to follow the next procedure, as the fonts probably need to be extracted from a cab file.)

With no Local Windows Installation

Summarizing from webFonts4Linux: High-quality TrueType fonts for the web — well, I planned to summarize, just quoting for now:

Another resource: the Xfree86 Font Deuglification Mini-HOWTO


The solution is webFonts.sh, a simple shell script that downloads the fonts for you from a mirror and installs them. The script tries to be installation independent. Just download it and execute it (chmod 755 webFonts.sh; ./webFonts.sh). Of course, feedback about problems on specific distributions is more than welcome.

The script needs cabextract, a tool that unzips CAB files. Here you can find a tarball, an RPM and a Debian package for it. Newer archives could be found at the cabextract home page, or on the Debian site.

The script needs also wget, but it comes with most (if not all) distributions, so you should not have any difficulty to find it.

Last but not least, to use these fonts you must have TrueType support enabled; the Xfree86 Font Deuglification Mini-HOWTO explains you how to do that.


Just run the script. You can choose the directory where the fonts will be installed. Depending on your proficiency with X, X font servers, etc. you may want to just download the fonts somewhere and then install them, or let the script do everything.

If the installation is successful, it is a good idea to change the default fonts of your browser to some of the new ones (which are easily distinguishable by the foundry, "monotype").




  • RandyKramer - 18 Apr 2002
  • <If you edit this page, add your name here, move this to the next line>

Rants (Ignore)

See MyRantings.

Linux fonts are one of my pet peeves. Even with Microsoft True Type fonts and the anti-aliasing that I've seen, they are not nearly as readable and easy on the eye as the Microsoft fonts are. (Well, maybe the True Type fonts are good, but I seem to have trouble getting all applications to use them consistently.)

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Topic revision: r9 - 2003-05-24 - RandyKramer
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