[Scribus] font management?

Craig Ringer craig
Fri Apr 15 12:45:10 CEST 2005

Tariq Rashid wrote:

>probably in contrast to common thinking, i am in favour of scribus managing
>its own fonts. 
>this means that:
> * Scribus is packaged (tar.gz) with its own fonts, even if they are
>duplicated by the OS. this means that scribus is more robust to OS changes and
>mismanagement. Also scribus can then provide good qaulity fonts and support issues are
>much reduced.
I do think it'd be interesting to provide a font bundle or perhaps a 
font download tool, but I'm not so sure the main tarball should include 
fonts. Size is one issue. Licensing is another - fonts tend to come 
under a variety of different licenses and I wouldn't want to have to 
worry about mixing that with the Scribus source tarball.

My experience with GhostScript, which works much this way, also suggests 
this isn't as much fun as it sounds :-( . I've always found gs's need 
for its own private fonts to be an incredible pain.

When it comes to the "support issues", most of those come from fonts 
people have downloaded from "free font" websites anyway. That wouldn't 
go away no matter what.

Overall, I'm personally not too sure it'd work out very well. That's 
only me, though.

> * It allows scribus to manage these fonts in the best way possible for
Another issue is that distro packages would HATE us if we did something like this. Especially Debian ;-) . Doubly so if we wanted to be able to move the fonts around.

I do wish there was some way of keeping track of and marking fonts 
installed by the user vs OS fonts, to help avoid the vanishing font 
problem you refer to. I'm not sure there is a reliable one though, other 
than checking "is it under $HOME" - and that doesn't handle fonts 
installed by the admin for all users on some NFS dir, or in /usr/local/, 
etc. It can be done for user font paths, but not fonts installed by 
kfontinstaller or by the user that are found with fontconfig.

One thing we should probably do is encourage people to take copies of 
their OS's fonts before upgrading, just in case.

Craig Ringer

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