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mkfontdir - create an index of X font files
in a directory
mkfontdir [-n] [-x suffix] [-r] [-p prefix] [-e encoding-directory-name]
... [--] [directory-name ... ]
For each directory argument, mkfontdir
reads all of the font files in the directory searching for properties named
"FONT", or (failing that) the name of the file stripped of its suffix.
These are converted to lower case and used as font names, and, along with
the name of the font file, are written out to the file "fonts.dir" in the
directory. The X server and font server use "fonts.dir" to find font files.
The kinds of font files read by mkfontdir depend on configuration parameters,
but typically include PCF (suffix ".pcf"), SNF (suffix ".snf") and BDF (suffix
".bdf"). If a font exists in multiple formats, mkfontdir will first choose
PCF, then SNF and finally BDF.
The first line of fonts.dir gives the number
of fonts in the file. The remaining lines list the fonts themselves, one
per line, in two fields. First is the name of the font file, followed by
a space and the name of the font.
Because scalable font files
do not usually include the X font name, the file "fonts.scale" can be used
to name the scalable fonts in the directory. The fonts listed in it are
copied to fonts.dir by mkfontdir. "fonts.scale" has the same format as the
The file "fonts.alias", which can be put
in any directory of the font-path, is used to map new names to existing
fonts, and should be edited by hand. The format is two white-space separated
columns, the first containing aliases and the second containing font-name
patterns. Lines beginning with "!" are comment lines and are ignored.
neither the alias nor the value specifies the size fields of the font name,
this is a scalable alias. A font name of any size that matches this alias
will be mapped to the same size of the font that the alias resolves to.
When a font alias is used, the name it references is searched for in the
normal manner, looking through each font directory in turn. This means
that the aliases need not mention fonts in the same directory as the alias
To embed white space in either name, simply enclose it in double-quote
marks; to embed double-quote marks (or any other character), precede them
"magic-alias with spaces" "\"font name\" with quotes"
If the string "FILE_NAMES_ALIASES" stands alone on a line, each file-name
in the directory (stripped of its suffix) will be used as an alias for
The option -e can be used to specify a directory
with encoding files. Every such directory is scanned for encoding files,
the list of which is then written to an "encodings.dir" file in every font
directory. The "encodings.dir" file is used by the server to find encoding
The "encodings.dir" file has the same format as "fonts.dir". It
maps encoding names (strings of the form CHARSET_REGISTRY-CHARSET_ENCODING
) to encoding file names.
The following options are supported:
- Specify a directory containing encoding files. The -e option may be specified
multiple times, and all the specified directories will be read. The order
of the entries is significant, as encodings found in earlier directories
override those in later ones; encoding files in the same directory are
discriminated by preferring compressed versions.
- do not scan for fonts,
do not write font directory files. This option is useful when generating
encoding directories only.
- Specify a prefix that is prepended to the encoding
file path names when they are written to the "encodings.dir" file. The prefix
is prepended as-is. If a `/' is required between the prefix and the path names,
it must be supplied explicitly as part of the prefix.
- Keep non-absolute
encoding directories in their relative form when writing the "encodings.dir"
file. The default is to convert relative encoding directories to absolute
directories by prepending the current directory. The positioning of this
options is significant, as this option only applies to subsequent -e options.
- -x suffix
- Ignore fonts files of type suffix.
- End options.
of fonts in the directory and the files they are stored in. Created by mkfontdir.
Read by the X server and font server each time the font path is set (see
- List of scalable fonts in the directory. Contents are
copied to fonts.dir by mkfontdir.
- List of font name aliases. Read
by the X server and font server each time the font path is set (see xset(1)
- List of known encodings and the files they are stored in. Created
by mkfontdir. Read by the X server and font server each time a font with
an unknown charset is opened.
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