Re: Support for symbol fonts

From: Markus Kuhn (
Date: Sat Jul 24 1999 - 05:18:12 EDT

Yung-Fong Tang wrote on 1999-07-23 16:04 UTC:
> Also, does anyone know any BDF/TrueType font which encode the following
> three encodings which posted under
> ?
> stdenc.txt
> symbol.txt
> zdingbat.txt

You will find in*

a hole lot of BDF fonts in ISO 10646-1 encoding. Some of the fixed fonts
(6x13, 9x15) cover all these repertoires. All of the fonts there cover
the repertoire of the Adobe Standard encoding (essentially the CP1252
repertoire minus the Euro). The Times Roman font covers also the Adobe
Symbol encoding.

I have written a simple Perl script, that takes as input an ISO 10646-1
encoded BDF file plus one of the Unicode MAPPINGS file and provides as
output a BDF file with the appropriate mapped encoding. I thus can very
easily generate the BDF files that you require. Just have a look at my
font files and let me know, which fonts exactly you need in which
encoding. If it is for a good purpose (i.e., free software), I'll do it
for free, if it is for a commercial project, a small donation towards
the XFree86 UCS font project would be very welcome.

However, before I invest some time into this, I would like to know from
you, why you want to have BDF fonts in these legacy encoding. Is there
really a very good reason for not using the ISO 10646-1 encoded BDF
fonts directly?

The XFree86 consortium plans later this year to remove most
non-ISO10646-1 BDF files from its distribution and substitute them for
equivalent ISO 10646-1 fonts with all currently available characters and
many more additional ones. The X server will be extended by a simple
conversion function that can generate on-the-fly legacy encodings such
as CP1252, KOI-8, CP1252, JIS X 208, etc. from the ISO 10646-1 encoded
source fonts. This will save us a lot of disk space and will make *many*
more font encoding options available to users at the same time.
Developers are nevertheless encouraged to use the ISO10646-1 fonts
directly, because they have a significantly better coverage than any of
the legacy characters (especially regarding mathematical characters
there really exists no alternative to UCS, even Adobe Symbol is *much*
too restricted).


Markus G. Kuhn, Computer Laboratory, University of Cambridge, UK
Email: mkuhn at,  WWW: <>

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