Red Hat Bugzilla – Bug 226973
Improper handling of genuine "Base35" font
Last modified: 2008-05-06 15:09:14 EDT
Description of problem:
If you install the genuine "base35" fonts from Adobe, fontconfig does not
properly handle Helvetica.
Version-Release number of selected component (if applicable):
Steps to Reproduce:
1. launch AbiWord
2. Choose Helvetica
It has the spacing of normal Helvetica but is actually using Helvetica Narrow
It should use Helvetica
Adobe does not call Helvetica "Helvetica Narrow" in the font family.
Here is from the afm file:
Comment Copyright (c) 1985, 1987, 1989, 1990, 1997, 1998, 1999 Adobe Systems Inc
orporated. All Rights Reserved.
Comment Creation Date: Mon Aug 23 13:07:10 1999
Comment UniqueID 44711
Comment VMusage 11195 50629
FullName Helvetica Narrow
The FamilyName is Helvetica
I think that is what is confusing fontconfig.
When I print to PDF and look at the embedded fonts, it is embedding Helvetica
Narrow and not Helvetica - which is how I know it is grabbing the font shapes
from the wrong font. I've attached a PDF file demonstrating the issue.
Since this is an often used "Base35" Postscript font, this certainly should not
Created attachment 147213 [details]
PDF file showing Helvetica metrics being used with Helvetica Narrow
I was sent an rtf file using both Helvetica and Helvetica-Narrow.
The PDF of the rtf file produced by the person who sent it to me embeds both
fonts, and displays them properly.
W/O making any changes to the rtf file, I printed to PDF on Fedora, and as
expected. only Helvetica-Narrow was embedded.
Created attachment 147216 [details]
RTF file using both Helvetica and Helvetica Narrow
This is an rtf file that specifies both fonts - Helvetica and Helvetica Narrow
Created attachment 147218 [details]
Proper PDF file made on another system
This is the RTF in attachment 147216 [details] printed to PDF properly on another system.
Created attachment 147219 [details]
Improper PDF demonstrating issue
This is the RTF in attachment 147216 [details] printed to PDF on Fedora - no changes made
to the RTF file, both Helvetica and Helvetica Narrow installed, but only
Helvetica-Narrow is embedded. Also, it looks like both are using the metrics
from regular Helvetica - as the spacing on the Fedora installed PDF file is too
wide for the Helvetica-narrow shapes that are embedded.
I installed Fedora 8 and the bug still exists.
I'm assuming the problem is with fontconfig. These failings seem to happen in
other apps as well.
Basically - there are several issues going on.
It definitely is treating Helvetica PS different than Nimbus Sans L which is bad.
I have the Type 1 Abobe Base35 fonts installed. They were purchased by me
directly from Adobe, not a third party.
I created a basic document using AbiWord to test the metrics against other
Helvetica clones when printed to a PDF document.
What's interesting - when I select Helvetica, it looks like it mixes up
Helvetica and Helvetica Narrow.
Same mixup happens with Nimbus Sans L except it does that mixup differently.
Using real Helvetica font:
Roman: It seems to use the Helvetica Narrow pfb but the Helvetica afm
Bold: It seems to get that one right, using the correct helvetica bold pfb and
Italic: It seems to substitute Helvetica Narrow pfb
Bold Italic: It seems to substitute Helvetica Narrow pfn
NOTE - if I rememove the helvetica narrow afm/pfb files - it does the right thing.
Using the URW Nimbus Sans L substitute:
Roman: It seems to use the narrow metrics with the regular font.
Bold: It seems to use the narrow metrics with the bold font
Italic: It seems to use the narrow italic metrics and font
Bold Italic: It seems to use the narrow bold italic metrics and font
From a user point of view - the document shouldn't result in the use of narrow
metrics (or fonts) at all - so there seems to be a bug with fontconfig grabbing
fonts that it is not suppose to.
But furthermore - given that there seems to be a bug in that respect, if the URW
clones really are the clones of the Base35 fonts then they should fail in the
same way. They fail differently.
The TrueType helvetica clones behaved as they should as far as what gets embedded.
Attached is original AbiWord document, export to .rtf of original AbiWord
document, and a PDF created from original AbiWord document.
Created attachment 276131 [details]
AbiWord document used to demonstrate bug
Created attachment 276141 [details]
rtf export of abiword document
I don't know if rtf version is helpful, it may help identify what fontconfig is
trying to do?
Created attachment 276151 [details]
Created by selecting "print to pdf" from the AbiWord print menu.
It shows that helvetica narrow and Nimbus Sans L narrow are being used in the
creation of the PDF document (view fonts in properties)
Fedora apologizes that these issues have not been resolved yet. We're
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