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Re: Helvetica Printer Fonts & HP 1100 (again)

On Sat, 1 Feb 2003, Donald Spoon wrote:

> Bill Moseley wrote:
> > When I print a calendar with Jpilot the fonts are really poor quality.

> As I understand it, the true "helvetica" font is not available on stock 
> Debian installs due to licensing problems from Adobe and/or Apple.  The 
> way Debian handles this is to substitute another font...in my case it is 
> the "verdana" fonts from the M$ TrueType" family...I think.  This is 
> done as part of setting up TrueType fonts on the system, and is done in 
> the /etc/X11/XftConfig file...agian "I think".

>From what I can tell I've upgraded past XftConfig and now use
/etc/fonts/fonts.conf.  At least that was the file I had to edit to keep
Mozilla from anti-aliasing small fonts (althouh Opera still uses AA
fonts for some reason).

I don't understand the connection between the screen fonts and the printer
fonts, though -- e.g. I'm not clear of font.conf effects the printer

> I dunno exacty what your problem is.  My understanding of fonts and how 
> they are handled in Debian is poor to start off, and I am getting even 
> more confused with the introduction of "defoma" and "pango" into the 
> overall mix that you see in Debian testing/unstable... depending on how 
> much of "unstable" you have installed.

I find not understanding how all the parts work together frustrating,
indeed.  I've spent hours bouncing around HOWTOs, Fontconfig, Freetype,
and XFree86 sites.  Seems like too much work just to get a printer to
print!  Feels like I'm back in 1980. ;)  

> The best I can offer is to run down the high-points of all I have done
> here and see if something there helps.
> 1.  I am using the "gimprint" printer drivers for CUPS.  Dunno if this 
> has any bearing, but the overall quality of ALL the fonts is 
> significantly better than other packages I have experimented with, IMHO. 
>   The hpijs printer drivers are also very good, but are even slower on 
> my system.

I've got cupsys-driver-gimpprint driver installed, but I didn't see any
gimp-print driver for my HP 1100.  I guess I expect that.

> 2.  Install TrueType fonts per the KDE "anti-aliasing-howto".  On my 
> sytem this is located in /usr/share/doc/anti-aliasing-howto.  The 
> significant points here are to use the "msttcorefonts" Debian package 
> from testing to get the fonts on your system, make the changes 
> recommended in /etc/X11/XF86Config-4 (looks like you have done this) and 
> in /etc/X11/fs/config, and to "upgrade" the /etc/X11/XftConfig file. 
> The last point is where I got the font substitution statement mentioned 
> above.  It is not there in the default Debian X install.  I just "cut & 
> paste" the sample file in the anti-aliasing-howto dir into 
> /etc/X11/XftConfig without modification after re-naming the original 
> XftConfig file to something else.

Ok, I've done that.  Although, as I said, I believe I'm using Xft2 and
/etc/fonts/fonts.conf.  I don't understand the file format, but it has:


On the other hand, if I print from Jpilot I don't see any of the font
config files (fonts.conf, XftConfig or X11/fs/config) touched.  So it
doesn't seem like any of those will make a difference.  Feel like I'm
spinning my wheels.

> One final "caveat"... I am not a font purist!  What looks horribe to you 
> may look OK to me.  An example of what you are seeing would be helpful, 
> if you can get it... a scan perhaps?

Na, in this case it's really ugly printing compared to everthing else
that's printed (e.g. from mozilla).  I'd scan it but that's another sore
point: The hotplug and usb stuff kind of works for my scanner, but after a
few hotplug events I get a kernel panic!  And I don't want a kernel panic
when, after 36 hours, wusage is almost done running on some logs....

Man, this is fun stuff!

Thanks for your help.

Bill Moseley moseley@hank.org

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