problem with fonts and Xft

Felix Kühling fxkuehl at
Tue Oct 5 03:22:26 PDT 2004

On Tue, 5 Oct 2004 08:34:40 +0200
marius at (Marius Hillenbrand) wrote:

> Hi,
> Yesterday I've begun my switch to X11R6.8.1 (from XFree86 4.3 before) -
> mainly because of the better support for my Radeon 9200 SE (hope for 3D).
> The build was without problems, I even managed to install the manual pages
> ( helps ;-) ).
> But: Just starting over kdm (after generating xorg.conf, of course)
> resulted in a mess. The fonts were invisible and in totally wrong metrics.
> For example the login etc. buttons in kdm are empty and larger than usual
> and the kdm login window does not fit the screen.
> Directly using startx resulted in same behaviour, the graphices itself is
> alright, but fonts are invisible and "too large".
> Old little xterm, started from .xsession, worked alright, however.
> So I assume the problem lies with the Xft extension, which is used by KDE
> (IMHO).
> The underlying system is Debian woody (+dirty updates) on i386 (K7).
> The problem is "critical", since the system is my parents' one (was enough
> work to convert them to Linux).
> Does anybody have the slightest idea what may cause the problem or where to
> look for bad configuration / check libraries ???
> Strangely, reverting to XFree86 4.3 (tarred /usr/X11R6 and /etc/X11) does
> downgrade to XF 4.3, but the problem now arises there, too.
> My backup didn't cover /etc/fonts, is fonts.conf or local.conf "powerful"
> enough to cause this problem ??

Possibly. I had some problems with missing fonts after upgrading to with Debian sarge that were solved by restoring the old fonts.conf
and local.conf. Maybe rerunning dpkg-reconfigure fontconfig would fix it
too. Fontconfig doesn't exist in plain woody. Now I guess it depends on
what you mean with "dirty updates".

Hope this helps,

| Felix Kühling <fxkuehl at>            |
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