I need to use pcf fonts but it seems that they are disabled now. I followed this thread without success. (both 70-yes-bitmaps.conf and -bitmaps)

The fonts are visible with xfontsel but the app can't see/use them. Any idea?

It used to work with Ubuntu 10.10 but I installed 11.10 now so I suspect GNOME 3 or Unity because there is no problem with KDE.


Try linking to 70-force-bitmaps instead. 70-yes-bitmaps doesn't seem to have anything in it. (This is taken from your link.) This worked for me on Ubuntu 12.04.

The process is like this (Added by a user on 14.04)

sudo ln -s /etc/fonts/conf.avail/70-force-bitmaps.conf /etc/fonts/conf.d/
sudo unlink /etc/fonts/conf.d/70-no-bitmaps.conf # For disabling no-bitmap setting

Then do this to update settings

sudo dpkg-reconfigure fontconfig
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As of Ubuntu 18.04, there seems to be no way to make all bitmap fonts available to font-config (therefore GUI applications), even one choose to use 70-force-bitmaps.conf. Take Lucida for example:

$ ls -l 70*
lrwxrwxrwx 1 root root 35 Sep 23 11:38 70-force-bitmaps.conf -> ../conf.avail/70-force-bitmaps.conf
$ xlsfonts | grep -ci lucida
$ fc-cache | grep -ci lucida

Even enabling it by name wouldn't work

$ cat 50-enable-lucida.conf
<!DOCTYPE fontconfig SYSTEM "fonts.dtd">
        <patelt name="family"><string>lucida</string></patelt>
$ sudo dpkg-reconfigure fontconfig
$ fc-cache | grep -ci lucida

70-force-bitmpas.conf still makes a select few fonts work - they are fixed, unifont, wqy-bitmap, all of them are typically used in xterm, where fixed is the main font and the other two are backup fonts to cover CJK character set.

It seems there is a progressive trend towards discouraging the use of bitmap fonts except in the occasion it can't be forgone - terminal emulators.

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The fonts are visible with xfontsel but the app can't see/use them.

If you have enabled bitmap fonts in /etc/fonts/conf.d and updated font-cache with sudo fc-cache -fv but still not seeing the bitmap fonts in fc-list (therefore not seeing them in app's font selection), there is a possibility that the wrong font package was installed. For example, if you installed xfonts-100dpi-transcoded you will get a lot of PCF files and some of them are even big, but xfonts-100dpi is the package that provides fonts for font-config.

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