[tex-live] Conflits in gsfonts packge and tex-live distro

Pander pander at users.sourceforge.net
Wed May 20 17:50:13 CEST 2009

Norbert Preining wrote:
> On Mi, 20 Mai 2009, Pander wrote:
>> Not yet, I also think about filing a bug for Ubuntu and Debian. My
>> opinion is that all extra stuff added by GNU/Linux distros in term of
>> extra characters should be committed upstream and only one archive of
>> (Ghostscript) gsfonts should be used by both texlive and GNU/Linux distros.
> It wasn't Debian (and much less Ubuntu) adding glyphs to these fonts, it
> was ghostscript's part. Debian is only packaging the fonts.
>> 1) Contact Ghostscript upstream maintainer and get his/her opinion
>> 2) Inform all downstream parties about approach (GNU/Linux gsfonts,
>> texlive, etc.)
>> 3) Probably/hopefully have upstream Ghostscript merge the gsfonts
>> extension (extra characters etc.) from GNU/Linux gsfonts
> They *are* from upstream, Debian is only packaging. You are mixing some
> things:
> URW++ released the fonts under GPL.
> Ghostscript added glyphs to the fonts.

(Without changing unique id inside the font but with changing file names
of the fonts.)

> Debian packaged the ghostscript version of the fonts.

(Here font hinting is done on hard coded file names of the fonts, the
files that have been renamed.)

> TeX Live uses the original URW++ fonts.
>> 4) Upgrade all downstream texlive, GNU/Linux gsfonts, etc.
> That is NOT about "upgrading". If hinting was lost while adding stuff
> that would mean loss of quality, so it will not happen.
>> Few, I have the feeling that these fonts that have been forked are going
>> to stir up a lot of dust for version and release management of some
>> distributions. Well, better now than later. The end result will be
> No, honestly, you are overdoing quite a lot. TeX Live has its own
> version management system, Debian its own, and there is no mixture.

That the are not mixed is know to me. The remark refers to hypothetical
situation where Ubuntu would possibly needed to change font file names.

> you decide to make your locally installed fonts available then you have
> to know what are the consequences.

Thanks for the extra explanation provided above. On an Ubuntu system
this is very inconvenient because the exact consequences regarding these
fonts are not known to all.

>> serving more people around the world when the fonts offer more glyphs.
> At lower quality, no.

Sorry, I did not know this. Thank you for providing more information. If
this is blocking merging the extra glyphs upstream, than those fonts
with extra glyphs should at least change the unique id in the fonts.

Personally I think the current situation is unclear for the normal end
user, even for most advanced users. They don't know what the
consequences are when installing gsfonts or texlive and what happens
when changing e.g. the order of the paths in fontconfig in terms of
glyph quality (or glyph quantity, depends on what you want).

Question I have is what are the Ubuntu/Debian packagers suppose to do
when they package texlive? At the moment they are still at texlive2007.
I think it is good for texlive (users and developers) to be available as
a package in Ubuntu repository with latest stable version. That is of
course up to Ubuntu to choose which fonts to incude of have override
what they have from other packages. I'm just concerned that normal users
get the best of what is out there.



> Best wishes
> Norbert
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> Dr. Norbert Preining <preining at logic.at>        Vienna University of Technology
> Debian Developer <preining at debian.org>                         Debian TeX Group
> gpg DSA: 0x09C5B094      fp: 14DF 2E6C 0307 BE6D AD76  A9C0 D2BF 4AA3 09C5 B094
> -------------------------------------------------------------------------------
> He stood up straight and looked the world squarely in the
> fields and hills. To add weight to his words he stuck the
> rabbit bone in his hair. He spread his arms out wide. `I
> will go mad!' he announced.
>                  --- Arthur discovering a way of coping with life on
>                  --- Prehistoric Earth.
>                  --- Douglas Adams, The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy

More information about the tex-live mailing list