[Pkg-fonts-devel] [Fontforge-devel] Versions of 0203 and 0215 don't agree about .sfd format

Steve White stevan.white at googlemail.com
Sun Mar 30 11:15:33 UTC 2008


Thanks, I think this cleared the situation up for us.

There remains a problem though.  In our case, FontForge showed a blank
font window when opening SFD files made by a build dated just a few
days later.  The user supposed that this meant the SFD files were

That is, FontForge sometimes fails silently when opening SFD files
from more recent builds.

As you say, FontForge is backward compatible, and that is a good
thing.  This silent failure can cause misunderstandings, however.

At present, the only solution is for the author of the SFD files to
tell the user which build was used to create the SFD files, and
recommend that the user obtain a version at least as recent to view
the SFD files.

I suggest that FontForge report to the user that it has failed to
understand some SFD feature, and explain that this can happen with
such a discrepancy in FontForge versions.

I don't see in the SFD files a record of the date of the FontForge
that created them.  If there were such a field, FontForge could check
that date, and go on to report to the user that in fact the SFD file
was made by a more recent version.

Cheers!  And thanks again!

On 29 Mar 2008 16:14:56 -0800, George Williams <gww at silcom.com> wrote:
> On Sat, 2008-03-29 at 08:14, Steve White wrote:
>  > I have been using FontForge from CVS of 20080215 to work on the GNU
>  > FreeFont project, as recommended in an earlier exchange on this list.
>  > I recently made a new release
>  >       https://savannah.gnu.org/projects/freefont/
>  >
>  > However, the Debian folks have been unable to open properly the .sfd
>  > files from that release using a version dated 20080203 (source in
>  Um, I don't guarantee backwards compatibility of sfd files, only
>  forwards.
>  > So which version is at fault?
>  Neither. Both do what they are designed to do.
>  > What is the best way to proceed, to allow the Debian packagers to
>  > build the FreeFont fonts from .sfd?
>  Have them upgrade to the current version.
>  I suppose you could downgrade, but that seems silly.
>  Changes which are backwards incompatible happen rarely, but they do
>  happen.

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