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Old 09-26-2004, 06:43 PM   #1
rps63ifid
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Registered: Feb 2004
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Mandrake 9.2: Problem with Firefox font anti-aliasing after applying latest patches


I am running Mandrake 9.2, and have been diligent about applying the security patches as they come out. Just a few minutes ago I applied the most recent batch (MDKSA-2004-093 through MDKSA-2004-102) by downloading them and invoking 'rpm -Fvh *.rpm' on each individual patch set. Everything seems to be functional, and working with one exception: Mozilla Firefox and Thunderbird now no longer seem to be using anti-aliased fonts. I double-checked and the setting under KDE | LookNFeel | Fonts is still set to use anti-aliasing.

The odd part is that not all fonts seem to be suffering from this, even within FireFox/Thunderbird (the menu font and sidebar font, for example seem fine, and even some of the fonts on certain pages seem fine, but if I point Firefox at cnn.com, almost everything on the page is rendered in a font that is definitely not anti-aliased).

Is this an application problem, a KDE problem, a problem with the latest XFree86 patch from Mandrake (MDKSA-2004-099), a problem with the gdk/gtk patch (-095-1), or something else?

Has anyone else seen this behavior?

Any ideas on how to resolve this?

Edited (09/26): Maybe an obvious question I should ask is whether there is a relatively simple means of "unapplying" each of the patches to determine where the problem first shows up, or whether I can drop back to the earlier versions of whatever is causing the problem?

Edited again (09/27): the more I poke around on various forums, the more I am beginning to wonder whether this is some sort of incompatibility with the gtk/xft versions of Firefox/Thunderbird and the Mandrake patch MDKSA-2004-095-1that updated gdk/gtk+2. As best I can tell, none of the other applications on my system is exhibiting this behavior.

--
Ron Stewart

Last edited by rps63ifid; 09-27-2004 at 07:58 AM.
 
Old 09-30-2004, 07:46 AM   #2
rps63ifid
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Question

More information on this: The wierd part is that not all fonts in Firefox and Thunderbird are suffering from the lack of anti-aliasing. For example, all of the fonts used on this site (LinuxQuestions.org) seem to be un-anti-aliased, same for /almost/ all fonts on cnn.com, but the fonts on palminfocenter.com are /almost/ all anti-aliased.

I thought this might be something broken with font caching, after poking around on various sites, so I rebuilt all of the fonts.cache files with 'fc-cache -fv' and restarted my system, but that doesn't seem to have made a bit of difference.

I am still hoping for some help...
 
Old 10-05-2004, 07:56 AM   #3
rps63ifid
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Thumbs up Fixed!

I finally found and fixed the problem, after stumbing across a description of something similar on the Web. I had tracked the ugly, non-anti-aliased fonts down to Web pages that included fonts such as Helvetica. When I started pulling that thread, I found that Helvetica was being loaded from /usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts/75dpi, based on the <dir> element in /etc/fonts/fonts.conf pointing to /usr/X11R6/lib/X11/fonts. By replacing that <dir> element to point to specific directories below the .../X11/fonts directory, but excluding the 75dpi directory (since those are bitmapped fonts), applications like Firefox no long pull in those fonts.
 
  


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