Font issues in InDesign using a font modified with FontForge

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Font issues in InDesign using a font modified with FontForge

Xarandir
Hi all,

I subscribed to this forum because I am having difficulties solving a problem that is intriguing me for quite some time. The problem is the following (trying to provide as much info as possible):

At work we have a font file (.ttf) with symbols. There was a need to change one symbol, related to "B", U0042, so I installed FontForge and changed the graphics of the symbol using an SVG image. Then I saved it as a new font file, installed the updated font and checked if the symbol was changed. And it was. So far so good, I thought.

However, the font is used in InDesign, and it turned out that all symbols in a document disappear when I use the new font. I started to investigate this, and I found the following:

In all InDesign documents, the symbols were defined using Unicode in the range F000 - F0FF (This is the Unicode Private Use Area) instead of 0020 - 00FF. When you enter "B" using the keyboard you get U0042, however when you use the Glyph panel to insert a character it identifies the symbol corresponding with "B" as UF042, and it inserts UF042. Surprisingly, however, the symbol is displayed correctly using the old font, both in the glyphs panel and in the document.

Now when you load the updated font file, the symbols are identified as in the 0020 - 00FF range, i.e. not in the PUA. On one hand this is consistent with FontForge, but on the other hand all our documents have defined the symbols in the PUA, and remapping them is quite a task. Between the load and save, FontForge must have changed something to the font file that prohibits InDesign to "see" them in the PUA.

Three other observations that may be relevant are:

1. The old font filename is presented in FontForge with (MAC) so I think the .ttf file was created using a MAC, but we use it in Windows.

2. InDesign identifies the new font file as an opentype font file, even though the extension is .ttf and without me changing anything relating to how the font file should be saved.

3. Other font files do not show any characters in the PUA.

Does anyone have an idea what's going on here? Is there a setting in FontForge to map or mirror graphics to the PUA, or is InDesign doing this? (I will also post this problem in the Adobe InDesign forum).

Thanks a lot,

Xar.
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Re: Font issues in InDesign using a font modified with FontForge

Dave Crossland
Hi

You could try using ttx to transport the GLYF table's outline of B from the fontforge-generated font into the original font. 

On 22 May 2016 at 14:56, Xarandir <[hidden email]> wrote:
Hi all,

I subscribed to this forum because I am having difficulties solving a
problem that is intriguing me for quite some time. The problem is the
following (trying to provide as much info as possible):

At work we have a font file (.ttf) with symbols. There was a need to change
one symbol, related to "B", U0042, so I installed FontForge and changed the
graphics of the symbol using an SVG image. Then I saved it as a new font
file, installed the updated font and checked if the symbol was changed. And
it was. So far so good, I thought.

However, the font is used in InDesign, and it turned out that all symbols in
a document disappear when I use the new font. I started to investigate this,
and I found the following:

In all InDesign documents, the symbols were defined using Unicode in the
range F000 - F0FF (This is the Unicode Private Use Area) instead of 0020 -
00FF. When you enter "B" using the keyboard you get U0042, however when you
use the Glyph panel to insert a character it identifies the symbol
corresponding with "B" as UF042, and it inserts UF042. Surprisingly,
however, the symbol is displayed correctly using the old font, both in the
glyphs panel and in the document.

Now when you load the /updated/ font file, the symbols are identified as in
the 0020 - 00FF range, i.e. not in the PUA. On one hand this is consistent
with FontForge, but on the other hand all our documents have defined the
symbols in the PUA, and remapping them is quite a task. Between the load and
save, FontForge must have changed something to the font file that prohibits
InDesign to "see" them in the PUA.

Three other observations that may be relevant are:

1. The old font filename is presented in FontForge with (MAC) so I think the
.ttf file was created using a MAC, but we use it in Windows.

2. InDesign identifies the new font file as an opentype font file, even
though the extension is .ttf and without me changing anything relating to
how the font file should be saved.

3. Other font files do not show any characters in the PUA.

Does anyone have an idea what's going on here? Is there a setting in
FontForge to map or mirror graphics to the PUA, or is InDesign doing this?
(I will also post this problem in the Adobe InDesign forum).

Thanks a lot,

Xar.




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Re: Font issues in InDesign using a font modified with FontForge

Xarandir
Thanks Dave. I will look into this and let you know if it worked. After conversion of the old and new fonts to XML I may be able to see what's going on by comparing both XML files.
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Re: Font issues in InDesign using a font modified with FontForge

Dave Crossland
Yes, I often do comparisons like this,

ttx -s old/font.ttf new/font.ttf;
meld old new;

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bring their own devices (BYOD) to work are irked by the imposition of MDM
restrictions. Mobile Device Manager Plus allows you to control only the
apps on BYO-devices by containerizing them, leaving personal data untouched!
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