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Re: Is apt-get still the cool package installer?

On Thu, Dec 17, 2009 at 03:14:21PM EST, Sjoerd Hiemstra wrote:
> sys49152@hushmail.com:
> > I do wish the font management was more simplified and structured
> > though, but I guess we can't have everything.

> Thanks to fontconfig, I do find it rather simplified and structured.
> Just put your new fonts into ~/.fonts (locally) or
> /usr/local/share/fonts (system wide) and they are available
> immediately.  As a font management program like Extensis Suitcase for
> MacOS, you can install fontmatrix.

I would go a step further, and say that it is totally transparent.

# apt-get install font-package

This will install the font in the appropriate directory and bounce
fontconfig to make the new font available to fontconfig-aware programs,
which _may_ need to be restarted. I believe that this is not even
necessary, at least for the mozilla suites.

As to older software that still relies on Xorg to obtain its fonts, I'm
pretty sure you only need to do an:

$ xset fp rehash

This covers the bases for just about anything that requires fonts on
your system.

As to TeX, and someone corrects me if I'm mistaken, things appear to be
somewhat more involved, at least with the L07 version that ships with
current debian distributions.

Obviously, if you install fonts from tarballs, you will need to put them
in a directory alreay known to fontconfig - or a subdirectory thereof,
and cycle fontconfig manually, specifying -f | --force.

If you want to keep them in a separate tree, you just add the directory
or directories to /etc/fonts/local.conf before you ask fontconfig to
refresh his cache.

So, I don't know about structured, but I can't think how font management
could be made any simpler.

Maybe the problem is that font-related documentation is scant, more
often than not obsolete, and at least where fontconfig is concerned, not
what I would call user-oriented.

This obviously concerns making new fonts available. As to configuring
applications to use new fonts to display content, or one particular GUI
to use them in its widgets, unless you stick with applications that
belong to one particular desktop environment, that's a different story.

I remember that not so long ago you could spend weeks tweaking fonts in
debian - or other linux systems before you got them to look right in
every place. Not any more.. font management is one area where things
have become considerably easier lately.


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