OSX font problems

anyisle's picture

I'm sure there is a thread on this, so if someone can point me in the right direction I'll willingly go.

I have fonts (both Postscript and TrueType) from the "old days - Sys. 9.2.2). I can't figure out how to get them to work on my 10.3.8 Mac. Double clicking on some cause the "Preview" software to launch with an empty file. Unstuffing does't. Changing the name to .(dot) LWFN or FFIL or anything else so far doesn't work. I'm lost and I need Algerian for a project today.
Help?

Thanks in advance.

capthaddock's picture

I don't know much about old fonts (never used OS 9), but can't you just open Fontbook and install them?

anyisle's picture

Nah, Fontbook and Suitcase don't recognize the files as font files. That is why I tried adding a suffix like LWFN. The font in question this time (Algerian) has is Postscript. It has a scr and datafork file. The .scr has 48k the other has zero k size. Surely there is a way to use these fonts on the "NEW" OS??

Thanks.

thelring's picture

you need dfontifier (for TT fonts) - you need to convert Mac OS 9 TT fonts into Mac OS X datafork TT fonts (.dfonts)

anyisle's picture

Thanks for dfontifier, now how about those pesky Postscript fonts?

thelring's picture

"I can't figure out how to get them to work on my 10.3.8 Mac."

= where's that font? folder?

I don't see why you can't use PS fonts?.....

levonk's picture

Neil, how did you get the fonts from OS 9 to OS X?

Can you ge the fonts to work on OS 9?

anyisle's picture

HBM and Levon:
I don't see why I can't use PS fonts either. The font is residing on my desktop in a folder called My fonts (just a holding area). Fontbook will not recognize the PS font and neither will suitcase.

I got the fonts by copying them to my memory stick from the G3 and copying from memory stick to the G4. This works perfectly with the ttf fonts, but not the PS. Remember, the PS fonts are divided into SCR and Printer which OSX doesn't use the same way as OS9.

The fonts work perfectly on os 9.2.2

Thomas Phinney's picture

It doesn't "use them the same way" in the sense that its rendering is different (for all font formats), but OS X will generally recognize valid Type 1 fonts from OS 9 just fine. You might want to read Apple's white paper on fonts in OS X to see if clearing your font cache or something will help.

There is absolutely no need to turn your pre-existing TrueType fonts into dfonts to make them work on OS X, either. I have no idea where somebody got that idea.

Cheers,

T

Thomas Phinney
Program Manager
Fonts & Core Technologies
Adobe Systems

thelring's picture

There is absolutely no need to turn your pre-existing TrueType fonts into dfonts to make them work on OS X, either. I have no idea where somebody got that idea.

so.....Classic does know how to make use of data fork-based .dfonts?

Mark Simonson's picture

Just a hunch, Neil. If you're using a "memory stick" to copy the fonts, it's possible that the suitcase file is losing its resources on the way. Many USB memory sticks (or whatever they may call them) are formated using a PC disk format that does not recognize the resource fork in a Mac file. Not all Mac files contain resource forks, but Mac font suitcases do, and it's where all the font data is stored.

A simple way to tell if this is in fact what's going on would be to stuff the fonts before transfering them with the memory stick and unstuffing them on the other Mac.

Incidentally, Fontbook doesn't recognize PostScript fonts directly. It sees them only via a suitcase (screenfont) file. To install them, double-click on the suitecase file or drag it onto the FontBook icon. Ironically, OSX will generally not let you see the screen fonts stored in the suitcase file but uses the linked PostScript fonts for screen display instead. However, all the style, metrics and kerning information is stored in the suitcase file. PostScript font files by themselves cannot be installed and nothing will happen if you try to open them in FontBook.

One more thing:

Font suitcases no longer have an icon that looks like a suitcase. Instead, look for the letters FFIL on the icon. "Font Suitcase" will also be shown as "Kind" in the Finder.

PostScript font files have the letters LWFN on their icons and are listed as "PostScript Type 1 Outline Font" under "Kind" in the Finder.

Thomas Phinney's picture

HBM:

That's the opposite problem. You previously wrote "you need to convert Mac OS 9 TT fonts into Mac OS X datafork TT fonts (.dfonts)."

No, Classic cannot make use of dfonts. But OS X can make use of "classic" fonts.

T

Mark Simonson's picture

H B M, Classic knows nothing of dfonts.

dfonts are required by low-level Unix stuff in OSX. Standard Mac TrueType fonts are stored in the resource fork of a font suitcase file. The low-level Unix stuff in OSX doesn't support resource forks in files, so the dfont format was created to get around this.

dfonts are not needed per se once OSX is up and running and any standard format (Mac or Windows TrueType, PostScript Type 1, OpenType) will work fine.

thelring's picture

Ah, sorry. I didn't mean OS 9 --> OS X, but OS X---> OS 9.

====
Maybe Tiger is going the fix the problems?

anyisle's picture

Mark!!!!!! Wooo Whoooooo. As soon as I read your post (3minutes ago) it made such plausable sense I stopped work on this rediculous project I'm absorbed in and tried it.

Of course it worked! Why didn't I think of that???

Thank you! And thanks too to HBM, Thomas Phinney, Levon and Paul. I hope I can answer a question here for somebody in the future.

Neil

Mark Simonson's picture

> Maybe Tiger is going the fix the problems?

Not sure which problems you mean.

anyisle's picture

Mark

It was the problem of getting the PS fonts to work on OSX. I was copying them to my memory stick "without" stuffing them first and they were losing their resource forks.

Thanks again.

anyisle's picture

Mark

It was the problem of getting the PS fonts to work on OSX. I was copying them to my memory stick "without" stuffing them first and they were losing their resource fork info.

Thanks again.

Mark Simonson's picture

I sort of lost the thread of what H B M was referring to. You're probably right.

thelring's picture

> Maybe Tiger is going the fix the problems?

Not sure which problems you mean.



First and foremost - to have a decent font management (font book ?!)

Mark Simonson's picture

I don't know the answer to that.

Personally, I have found FontBook to be sufficient for my own purposes and less trouble than the more full-featured font managers that I have tried to use with OSX (Font Reserve 3 and Suitcase X). If you use Classic a lot, be sure to check the preferences in FontBook and select "Installing fonts makes them available for Classic Mac OS." I also use the option to have FontBook copy rather than move fonts when installing them.

If I had to continually activate and deactivate fonts in my work or needed auto-activation, FontBook probably wouldn't be a good choice.

levonk's picture

Neil, most files will transfer well with a PC formated memory stick, except for fonts. I don't know why.

I had the same problem some time ago. One way is stuffing the fonts.

If you will only use the memory stick to transfer files between macs, format it for mac, that way you will resolve many problems and reduce the confusion of files starting with (.)

If you will use both mac and PC then your only option is to stuff the font files.

Bert Vanderveen's picture

I've encountered font suitcases that "acquired" wrong suffixes thru copying, eg .scr that was misinterpreted by OS X (double clicking opened GraphicConverter instead of FontBook).
When that happens you can restore this to "normal" behaviour by using Get Info on one of those pesky files and poining Open with to FontBook and checking Change all...

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