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Defaulting and substituting missing fonts

This page applies to Harlequin v13.1r0 and later; both Harlequin Core and Harlequin MultiRIP

By default the Courier font (or the appropriate alternative in the installed font set) will be used when a single-byte font requested by the job is not embedded in the job and is not available in the SW directory.

The default can be amended by defining SubstituteFont in the $error dictionary. The value must be a PostScript procedure that consumes the name of the missing font and returns the name of the default to use instead.

An example definition is supplied in SW/Config/FontSubstitution :

$error /SubstituteFont { pop /Courier } bind put

For CIDfonts the equivalent is SubstituteCIDFont in the $error dictionary. The default CIDFont is CID-Bullet, which replaces all glyphs with bullets. It is therefore useful to identify that there is an issue, but it will very rarely produce usable output.

Care should be taken in replacing CID-Bullet , however. An alternative may work well in cases where a CID font is not available and the encoding to be used is supplied, but there are instances where that encoding information is not defined. In such cases using a “real” default CID font is quite likely to lead to the wrong glyph being used.

By default a warning is emitted when fonts are defaulted. The warning may be suppressed by setting the SilentFontFault user parameter to true .

<< /SilentFontFault true >> setuserparams

For a more flexible replacement a list of replacements may be defined as the value of ConditionalFontSubstitution in statusdict . This must be a dictionary. Each key is the name of a font that should be used as a substitute, and its value should be an array of font names that should be replaced using that substitute if they are not available.

  statusdict /ConditionalFontSubstitution <<
  /TimesNewRoman [ /TimesNewRomanPSMT /Times-Roman ]
  /TimesNewRomanPS-BoldItalic [
  /Arial [ /ArialMT /Helvetica ]
  /CourierNew [ /CourierNewPSMT /Courier ]
  >> put

A proforma entry is included in SW/Config/Fontsubstitution.

Note that you must ensure that:

  • The two fonts are very similar in glyphs supported and glyph names; otherwise a lot of glyphs may be missing, or replaced with plain rectangles on the output.
  • Single-byte fonts are not used to substitute for double-byte fonts and vice versa.
  • When substituting for double-byte fonts the two fonts should use the same encoding.
  • CID fonts in ConditionalFontSubstitution are not included; they should use ConditionalCIDFontSubstitution . You cannot use this mechanism to substitute a non-CID font for a CID font or vice versa.

By default, font replacements using the ConditionalFontSubstitution dictionary will be reported as warnings. Those warnings may be suppressed by setting SilentConditionalFontSubstitution to true in statusdict .

statusdict /SilentConditionalFontSubstitution true put

The SW/Config/FontSubstitution file is run as the RIP boots, but all values set within it may be overridden in later RIP configuration code.

For defaulting CID fonts define ConditionalCIDFontSubstitution in statusdict, using exactly the same format as for ConditionalFontSubstitution . But this capability must be used with extreme care to avoid selecting the incorrect glyphs:

  • The two fonts must use the same Registry and Ordering entries. That means that they would ordinarily use the same CMaps .
  • The two fonts must be of the same CIDFontType .
  • If the font name contains any international characters (bytes > 126), you must take steps to escape the name appropriately; either use a hexadecimal string or enclose it in parentheses and prefix any parenthesis or backslash characters with a backslash.

Note: If you are not confident that these conditions will be met, do not substitute CID fonts.

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