Fontlab - OT features

grod's picture

So I made a font with liga, smcp, onum, pnum, and tnum. All very basic. I generated the font. I started laying out pages in InDesign to see if it was ready. Everything worked fine. But I thought the metrics weren't quite right so I adjusted them in the .vfb file, removed the .otf and regenerated the font. Many tries later (including rewriting the features and rebuilding the classes) I still can't get the features to work in Indesign. In fact, they are unavailable. What am I doing wrong?

charles ellertson's picture

Did you remember to (re)compile the feaures? Did you check them out in FontLab's preview window? And perhaps you're using a Mac?

Charles

grod's picture

Yes, yes, and no, I'm using a PC. This is getting really frustrating. They look fine in the preview window, the imported otf has the features present, but still, InDesign won't admit it. Arrrgh. Fool that I am, I don't have the functioning version of the font anymore.

charles ellertson's picture

Sounds like you did everything right -- that is frustrating.

It feels like InDesign can't find the correct font. I'm no InDesign expert; there are several ways to get it to "see" a font. I've always used ATM to remove & install fonts to the system when playing w/ InDesign. Did you do it that way?

twardoch's picture

Noah,

have you removed all AdobeFnt*.lst files?

Adam

grod's picture

I've been using Suitcase, not ATM. I'll download ATM light and see what it does.

twardoch's picture

Noah,

do not download ATM Light, no need for that.
Have you removed all AdobeFnt*.lst files?

Adam

grod's picture

yes I have. It didn't help and they've already been rebuilt.

grod's picture

OK. I opened the otf file, changed all the file info so that the font is now identified as "frustrated", checked the features, made certain they were compiled, and generated the font. Then I removed all the AdobeFn*.lst files, deactivated and removed the problem font and installed the new font. InDesign still refuses to recognize the features. I'm going to try to use it on another machine.

grod's picture

And it works on my other machine. What. The. Hell?!

twardoch's picture

Have you also removed stuff like AdbW1Fnt07.lst? On your entire disk?

Adam

grod's picture

yup

Thomas Phinney's picture

Hmmm. Really does sound like an app caching problem, as others are suggesting. But it also sounds like you've been doing the right things to prevent that. Most curious!

T

grod's picture

I'm a hairspace away from re-installing InDesign

grod's picture

well, that didn't work either. The font works fine on my other machine. WTF?!

dezcom's picture

are you using Suitcase? Maybe it is not loadinf the revised font. Try installing directly and rebooting.

grod's picture

didn't work. This is so weird

grod's picture

I am going mad... Nothing I do works. I made a font with two glyphs. A triangle at the 'a' and a square. I set up two classes with the 'a' in the first and the square in the second, added a smcp feature that when active substituted the second class for the first, generated the font, and it worked fine in InDesign CS. Anyone want to take a look at my .vfb and or the otf file for the real font that I'm trying to work on and tell me what I've managed to do wrong? contact me,
my first initial last name @ gmail.com

grod's picture

please?

twardoch's picture

Noah,

if your actual font works fine on one computer but doesn't on another, then it's a clear indication that something's wrong with one of the computers (system, InDesign installation etc.) rather than the font.

If you presume that something is wrong with the font, and you're using FontLab, why don't you contact FontLab tech support at the usual location*? You paid for the software, you're eligible to receive free tech support. We're there and we will gladly help you.

* Go to http://www.fontlab.com/ , click on Technical Support and submit a Problem Report.

Regards,
Adam Twardoch
Fontlab Ltd.

grod's picture

I am convinced that it is a problem in InDesign, not FontLab, but it is possibly a problem in this font. InDesign 2 and CS are very different in how they handle this stuff. I'm going to contact Adobe first and if they don't have any ideas I'll contact FontLab directly. I have a natural inclination to want to solve problems without tech support and use them as a last resort, an irrational bias, I know.

magister's picture

Noah,

I had a similar problem, but with Word, not InDesign. I made changes to a font which were ignored by Word. The solution turned out to be deleting the font from Windows, rebooting, then reinstalling the font. This was a standard TTF, not an OTF; but it might work. Just my 2 cents.

David

Thomas Phinney's picture

Are you using different versions of InDesign on the two different machines?

Can you be more specific about how ID2 and IDCS differ in your experience? This sort of substitution I would not expect to behave in any way differently in the two app versions.

In general, I am inclined to agree with Adam that, in this area of font functionality, if the font works correctly on one of the two computers, the problem probably lies outside the font. (There are some other areas where I would not bet on this, like whether and how fonts appear in application menus, but that's another story.)

Oh, and it's probably not necessary to "contact Adobe" seeing as I'm here. Besides being the PM responsible for fonts, I'm also the PM responsible for Core Tech components in InDesign....

Regards,

T

Program Manager
Fonts & Core Technologies
Adobe Systems

charles ellertson's picture

Wild thought -- long ago, there was a problem with "font caching", wherein some RIP's would cache the font by the font's ID number. Strange things could happen . . . which led me to both rename all my fonts (Bembo is B0500000) AND to set the font ID number to "0" (zero) in Fontographer. This let Fontographer write off the font with the font ID number as a comment line.

I can't find a similar place to comment out the font ID number in FontLab 4.6.

Charles

Thomas Phinney's picture

If your problem were at print time, that might have something to do with it. But it's on screen, right? No Adobe applications are using the UniqueID (nor its successor, the XUID) for any such purpose.

Adobe itself no longer uses these, and omits them entirely in new fonts. You can just leave them blank in FontLab. They're in the first set of stuff under "Version and Identification" in the Font Info dialog.

T

grod's picture

Thomas:
My experience of the differences between InD2 and InDCS are that the latter is less prone to crashing, feels faster, and is more intuitive to use. My assumption is that the underlying technology is very different from that found in earlier versions, different enough that I would not be surprised if they share less than 50% of their code. At anyrate, the continued lack of backwards compatibility and adobe's failure to provide the promised plugin coupled with their recommended solution of using xml as the interchange format suggests that there are differences in how things are handled. Big ones. Additionally, InD2 has no problem with the font while InDCS does. What I've heard is that InDCS bypasses most of the OS level font handling, though I don't know if this is only for Macs.

Since I doubt someone such as yourself would have any desire to steal the unfinished font of a novice (this goes for anyone on this board) if you have InDCS handy and are willing to test the font at least then I will be certain that it is something specific to my machine.

Thomas Phinney's picture

The underlying technology in ID2 and IDCS is essentially the same. In areas that are present in both, the composition engine was revised, and plenty of bugs were fixed, and performance was improved, but the overwhelming majority of the code that was in ID2 continued into IDCS.

Both versions bypass substantial aspects of the OS level font handling, though both rely on the OS for some of that (like enumerating fonts installed at the system level, and on the Mac enumerating the primary script supported by the font). You might see more bypassing the OS in the future, as we continue to contend with OS-level bugs.

I'm going to continue to be pretty swamped this week, but if nobody else takes a look at it before then, I'd be happy to look at your font next week.

Regards,

T

grod's picture

Cool, with any luck I'll have figured it out for myself by then, but if not I'd really appricate it. I'm 99% certain it isn't the font, but I just reinstalled InDesign after wiping every trace of it from the registry as well as all files it left behind after the uninstall and none of the versions of the font work with it, but they all work on my old machine.

grod's picture

Now it is working and I don't know what I did?! ARRRGHHH! Thanks everyone for putting up with this madness. I hope it stays working now.

dezcom's picture

Did you change the name of the font?

grod's picture

> I changed the name and everything else each and every time I generated > it after someone here suggested it could be a cacheing problem. I > don't know what made it work, but the results are visible over in > this thread: > http://www.typophile.com/forums/messages/29/63584.html?1106715757 > > >

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