Shipping only OpenType versions of Linux Libertine causes them not to display in the Chromium browser
dandromb at gmail.com
Mon Jun 20 21:20:49 UTC 2016
I am concerned about an issue I experienced with Linux Libertine, on
chromium. One might install the fonts via "sudo apt-get install
fonts-linuxlibertine", like I did, so that they would show up when browsing
Wikipedia. But they didn't show up for me.
The whole story (the reason why the fonts don't get use in chromium at the
moment) is this:
a) chromium does not obey fontconfig rules most of the time.
(according to a blog post I found by an ex-chrome developer:
b) the OpenType version of Linux Libertine is named "Linux Libertine O"
c) Ubuntu packages the OpenType version only.
It comes packaged in "fonts-linuxlibertine" along with fontconfig rules
that tell the system to use it as "Linux Libertine" and everything is fine.
But as I pointed out, Chromium does not read the fontconfig files. It just
sees that "Linux Libertine" isn't on the system (it's kind of isn't, so
Chromium is right on a technicality). Websites asking for "Linux
Libertine," e.g. Wikipedia don't get the font and don't use it.
Firefox doesn't have this issue, because firefox actually heeds the
Also, the ttf version of the font is simply named "Linux Libertine" so that
one can install both ttf and otf formatted versions side-by-side. I think
that installing both formats is of dubious value, especially considering
that it makes the fonts hard to use in chromium and any other web browser
unaware of fontconfig.
I have filed a bug on the chromium bug tracker, but I'm afraid it's not
their problem, so the bug there will probably be marked invalid. (unless
they decide to start obeying fontconfig, which I think is an
inappropriately major decision just to resolve my bug.)
Long story short, it would work in chromium if the TTF version of these
fonts were available in the Ubuntu repositories somewhere or if the fonts
were renamed a bit.
There are a few options to fix this:
1) ttf-linuxlibertine package could be made available again
2) fonts-linuxlibertine could include the ttf files in some way, regardless
of whether the otf files stay or go
3) fonts-linuxlibertine could include the otf files renamed as simply
"Linux Libertine" rather than "Linux Libertine O"
I would like to discuss this so that Ubuntu users can install Linux
Libertine from the repositories, and see Wikipedia in all its typographical
glory on all the major web browsers. Thank you.
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