Font management with Apple Librofont

I've some fonts in different weights (thin, regular, bold etc.) that work regularly for example with Libreoffice on Linux Debian. The menu offers me the possibility to choose the desired weight.
Installed with Librofont on a MacBook, the fonts instead show the generic family name and I don't have the possibility to choose the weight. Is there a trick to solve the problem? Or have I to change some parameters in the font names (for example "preferred family") within the font itself?



  • Thomas PhinneyThomas Phinney Posts: 2,289
    edited October 2021
    There are a TON of different metadata fields relating to font naming, in a TrueType or OpenType font.

    There is a font named Libro, but I can’t find any app called “Librofont.”

    I don’t know exactly what you mean by “show the generic family name.”

    Especially, you don’t say exactly what fonts you are talking about and where you got them.

    Broadly speaking: a font installing OK on one operating system will not necessarily install correctly on a different operating system. Linux, macOS and Windows will each care about some different things.

    There is no simple “trick” to solve the problem. People actually study and learn about all the details and issues around font naming. I have done entire presentations on the subject, although none in recent years.

    Here’s a message thread on the topic by Adam Twardoch. It is getting a bit old, and the MS Word 2011 problems mentioned are no longer problems, I don’t think. But at least it gives some idea of the complexity:

    Perhaps somebody has a more current version of this sort of document?

  • mauro sacchettomauro sacchetto Posts: 334
    edited October 2021
    I am referring for example to the Raleway font (ttf), which I downloaded from Google Fonts.
    Just installed in Debian, I find in LibreOffice (for Linux) - in the drop-down menu to choose the fonts - all weights, as if each weight were a separate family: "Raleway Thin", "Raleway Regular", etc.
    In Apple systems there is a utility to manage fonts called LibroFont App, which is used to install them, remove them, disable them etc.
    In this case, as I have already said, LibroFont App recognizes the various weights, but in LIbreOffice (for Mac) in the menu to choose the fonts, I find only the "Raleway" item which does not allow me to choose the weight; in this case only "Raleway Regular" works by default, so I can't opt ​​for "Raleway Thin" or "Raleway Extrabold", for example.
    I generally understand that various operating systems treat fonts differently. What I ask is what and how to change, in the various fields that define the name of the font, so that the various weights are recognized in Apple systems.
    However, the problem affects many other fonts, including Minion Pro (otf), taken from Adobe FontFolio version 11.1.
    Here I insert two screenshots, where you can see the settings for Regular weight of the font in question:
    And here I insert two screenshots, where you can see the settings for Thin weight of the same font:

  • So, I'll answer myself. I specify that I have only recently had a MacBookPro and I had never used Apple devices before.
    It was something new to me, because obviously the two systems, Linux and Apple,
    they also work differently with regard to the same applications.
    The solution is actually very simple,even if I found many posts on the net that pose my problem: it was enough to fiddle with five minutes ...
    In LibreOffice for Linux the various weights are indicated as if they were different families in the menu for choosing the font.
    In LibreOffice for Mac, on the other hand, the menu contains only the general name of the family and, to choose the various weights, you have to take a little more step by entering the specific font menu.
    Pages also recognizes the various weights, not from the drop-down menu, but from the formatting menu: to be clear, the first is the one at the top of the bar, the second is the wide one on the right.

  • edited October 2021
    I guess Librofont is the Italian name for Font Book. For some reason, Apple changes the name of its font manager depending on the language you work with. In Spanish it is called “Catálogo Tipográfico.”
  • I too think so, for the Italian for "book" is "libro".
    I have yet to take the measures that the same application (like LibreOffice) works slightly differently on the various platforms ...
  • k_lk_l Posts: 55
    In LibreOffice for Mac, on the other hand, the menu contains only the general name of the family and, to choose the various weights, you have to take a little more step by entering the specific font menu.
    Unfortunately. Go to Format > Character…, choose Font tab, select a Family, which shows additional (though not necessarily all available) styles in the Typeface column. I make more explicit what you said just in case that others run into this too.
  • Another small clarification: in reality the two programs do not always produce, beyond the differences in the procedure, the same results. For example, still on Apple devices, Pages shows - to talk more about the font I used as an example, that is Raleway - both the Regular (400) and the Medium (500), while in LibreOffice the Medium does not appear.
    This is probably due to the ambiguity of the classification, on which I ask the forum for clarification.
    In fact, for the Regular the weight class is Book, 400 and the Style map Regular; for the Medium the weight class is Medium, 500 and the Style Map still Regular. Can't this confuse programs that use the font? And how can the problem be solved?

  • Font handling in LibreOffice for the Mac is a horror show (I say this as a loyal user of LibreOffice). For a large family of fonts it commonly makes available only about half of the faces, and in practice some faces are substituted for others. I believe I have seen bug reports about this—it's been a problem for years—but nothing gets done.
  • I opened Bug 145041 - Font management for LibreOffice
  • I'm glad you did—but I've got a notion that a good proportion of the previous 145040 bug reports are complaints about font handling in the Mac version.
  • On Mac you can look into the folders which fonts are installed and which file extension they have. 



    /Users/<your name>/Library/Fonts

    The program TextEdit has a very complete support of fonts and features. You can use it for comparison, what LibreOffice lacks. E.g. Helvetica Neue is a font family (.ttc) with 14 style combinations supported in TextEdit but only regular, bold and italic in LibreOffice.

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