Adding Fonts to Word Processors

Each word processor provides its own font management facilities. You may need to consult your word processor's documentation for details on how to do the job. In broad outline, the procedures for the more popular programs are described here: Writer You run the spadmin program to administer fonts and printers. (You may need to change into the directory in which this program resides to run it or it will get confused.) Click the Fonts button to enter the font manager (as shown in Figure 7.6). You can then add TrueType or PostScript fonts by clicking Add and selecting the fonts you want to add in the resulting file selector. Unfortunately,'s font installer tends to be very finicky; sometimes it won't install a font, or will appear to install a font but not make it available, or display a similarly-named X font instead.

Figure 7.6: provides a GUI font management tool.

KWord If you check the KWord font list, you'll see all your standard X fonts; however, if you try to print in anything but a standard PostScript font, chances are you'll find that your font has been replaced with another. To avoid this problem, you must install the target font in your PostScript printer or, if you're using a non-PostScript printer, in Ghostscript. (The upcoming section, "Ghostscript Font Management," covers this procedure in more detail.) It may be helpful to generate a sample PostScript file that uses the fonts in question so that you can identify the names that KWord uses for them. Recent versions of KWord also support Xft fonts for both on-screen display and printing.

Tip If you use a PostScript printer and you don't have the ability to easily add a font to the printer, you can create a print queue that prints to the PostScript printer using Ghostscript's PostScript output driver. This is an ugly solution in many ways, but it enables you to add fonts to Ghostscript rather than to the printer.

AbiWord This program ships with a basic set of fonts, which it stores in /usr/share/AbiSuite/fonts or a similar location. You can add fonts by placing them in this directory and modifying the fonts.dir and fonts.scale files. These files have the same format as the files of the same name in X font directories, as described in Chapter 16. When you run AbiWord, it tells X to add this font directory's contents to its list of fonts, so both X and AbiWord have access to the same fonts. AbiWord works best with Adobe Type 1 fonts. TrueType fonts may work, but they require both X and your printer (or Ghostscript) to have TrueType support, and you must also jump through extra configuration hoops.

Note AbiWord's developers plan to change its font-handling system to use Xft in the near future. The preceding description is accurate as of version 1.0.2.

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