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-   -   Rendering Fonts, Not! (

heatherlka 05-18-2020 12:32 PM

Rendering Fonts, Not!
I am posting here as I am not sure where else to post. I confess that I am a Font Junkie! And the one thing that has bothered me from day one with Linux is the inability to render what I consider to be the most common font families.

I think where it bothers me the most is online, in browsers, how does a site that is one font say on Windows or Mac, not show the same way/font on seemingly ANY Linux distro? And is there any way to fix this and why isn't this an issue that has been addressed years ago?

And seriously, why do a lot of distros come preinstalled with like 20 different font families that are basically the same with I am guessing the exception of which East Asian font they also render? And if these families are truly different in design and it doesn't show in Linux, what is the point?

sevendogsbsd 05-18-2020 12:40 PM

Interesting. I have always thought fonts in Linux, and even FreeBSD are nice and clean and sharp, especially compared to Windows. Windows fonts to me are fuzzy and unclear. I could care less what font a web site provides - that is pointless to me; I only care that it renders cleanly.

I agree there are too many fonts installed in most linux distros but many of them have international fonts in multiple languages. I only speak English so for me, I usually rip out all fonts but the ones I care about (like 3 or 4).

Not sure what the issue is?

heatherlka 05-18-2020 12:59 PM

oh for sure the fonts that Linux does render they do a wonderful job :) and while I do speak more than just English and thus have 3 keyboards installed, none of the writing systems I use are East Asian :) And with my old distro, I did the same of disabling/inactivating a lot of the 'extra' fonts. It is more that when I go to use a font that I know what it should look like, and it instead has rendered to sans serif or times :(

However, in reading posts on Reddit for other issues, I might have fix at least part of the issue with my fonts, so we will see :)

ondoho 05-18-2020 01:37 PM

The beauty of Linux is that you can all set it up to your liking - remove the East Asian fonts and whatnot, set up font substitutions just the way you want, even install actual Microsoft and Apple fonts.

It's a long and winding topic and admittedly a bit of a sore point with GNU/Linux (I too like perfect font rendering).
Here's how I dealt with it:

heatherlka 05-18-2020 01:51 PM

Thank you ondoho :) I think that I have actually come across one of the posts in past research.
The problem being that I am not a Linux guru :( Don't get me wrong, I can handle a lot of day to day stuff
and I do not mind looking for things even if that means terminal usage :) but, I still require a lot of hand-holding :)
maybe one day I will be there, just not today :)

Thanks again for the help it is read and saved in hopes of being better able in the near future to apply!

dugan 05-26-2020 10:53 AM

I'm not 100 percent sure what you're asking, but:

1. The following command will install the Microsoft fonts (Verdana, Aria, Courier New, Times New Roman, etc) that were used for all web pages a while back.


sudo apt install ttf-mscorefonts-installer
2. Set font hinting to "slight" for a Mac look and "full" for a Windows look. You can do that in the distribution's GUI control panels.

DavidMcCann 05-26-2020 11:32 AM

As far as the browsers are concerned, they can only used what's available on your computer. That's why they usually specify several fonts, including a fallback or "serif" or "sans", since Windows and the Mac don't have the same fonts, let alone Linux. If you're fussy (I am!) you can always set the browser to use fonts of your choice and ignore the site specification.

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