Re: Pb with Unicode Tifinagh with Internet Explorer

From: Andrew West (
Date: Thu May 28 2009 - 05:14:33 CDT

  • Next message: Neil Harris: "Re: Pb with Unicode Tifinagh with Internet Explorer"

    2009/5/28 Andrew Cunningham <>:
    > But that said ... no browser will allow you to set a preferred default font
    > for Tifinagh.

    In my opinion, all browsers are broken in this respect.

    > On Windows 7, IE8 will use Ebrima by default. The question is
    > what will Firefox use as default for Tifinagh on Windows 7. Will you also be
    > stuck with Ebrima in both IE and Firefox?

    It all depends on what other fonts you have on your system (see below).

    > If anyone knows how and why Firefox selects fonts, I'd love to know.

    I've got seven working Tifinagh fonts on my system (Code2000, DejaVu
    Sans, DejaVu Sans Condensed, Everson Mono, Hapax Berbère, Hapax
    Touareg and Hapax Touareg DàG), but when I configure my default font
    for Firefox to be something that does not cover Tifinagh (e.g. Arial)
    the Tifinagh characters on
    <> are rendered using the
    Unicode BMP Fallback SIL font. If I then uninstall Unicode BMP
    Fallback SIL and reload Firfox it now uses the LastResort font to
    display the Tifinagh characters. Continuing to uninstall each font one
    at a time, the order of priority is:

    1. Unicode BMP Fallback SIL
    2. LastResort
    3. Hapax Touareg DàG
    4. Hapax Touareg
    5. Hapax Berbère
    6. Everson Mono
    7. DejaVu Sans Condensed
    8. DejaVu Sans
    9. Code2000

    i.e. reverse alphabetical order. I guess what Firefox is doing is
    iterating through all fonts and checking for coverage of the Tifinagh
    characters, and the last iterated font that has coverage is the font
    that is used ... which is rather unfortunate if either Unicode BMP
    Fallback SIL or LastResort is installed. On the other hand, if you are
    a font developer and you want your Tifinagh font to be used by default
    by Firefox then simply name it something like "ZZZMyTifinaghFont".

    (And if I uninstall all fonts with Tifinagh coverage Firefox displays
    boxes with a hex codepoint value inside ... not from a built-in font,
    but drawn dynamically I think, as the relative sizes of the hex digits
    and their enclosing box varies at different zoom levels)


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