Reopening: Q: webfonts:

Petr Vobornik pvoborni at
Wed Nov 27 14:39:09 UTC 2013


I would like to reopen the discussion about packaging web fonts since 
its conclusion(below) is not very usable.

The issue I'm dealing with is that we want FreeIPA Web UI to use Open 
Sans and Font Awesome(FA) font. FA is being packaged and I planned to 
package Open Sans (Apache license v2). But TTF versions of both fonts 
will fail in IE.

OTF/TTF fails in all modern versions of IE when the font does not have 
embedding permissions set to 'installable' [1]. It's more common that 
one would say. This behavior is considered as a feature (probably won't 
be changed anytime soon).

Adding WOFF format would fix IE 9+ and IE mobile [2]. Adding EOT would 
fix IE 6+ [3].

Influencing upstream to fix the permission is not usable when upstream 
is dead or not clear.

IMHO packaging guidelines should not control which clients packaged web 
app should support, and therefore political discussion about IE is not 
very relevant when technical solution exists.

Those are the reasons why I don't agree with the statement that OTF/TTF 
should cover majority of cases and therefore we should not allow 
packaging/care about other formats.

So the questions is: *Should packaging of WOFF and EOT be explicitly 
allowed by packaging rules?*

Subsequent Qs like "Where?" and "What about the already packaged fonts" 
don't matter until the main Q is answered.


Petr Vobornik

On 05/06/2013 05:46 PM, Nicolas Mailhot wrote:
> Le Dim 5 mai 2013 12:30, Alec Leamas a écrit :
>> On 05/05/2013 11:40 AM, Nicolas Mailhot wrote:
>>> Are you sure it works well in IE8 at all? Because there are lots of
>>> other
>>> reasons a modern web site will fail in old ie versions
>> Double checking... and you're right, openerp only supports IE 9+.
>> Which means that I could indeed go for using ttf/otf only. Other folks
>> might have interest  in this, don't know, but  as fas as I am concerned
>> this resolves some  loose ends.
>> I'm still not convinced that it makes sense to package a font like
>> zocial like a regular desktop font (leaving legal issues aside here).
> Why not? People use all kind of symbol fonts in presentations and other
> documents (they *love* their symbol fonts, that was a major driver for
> dejavu adoption). As long as the font is technically sane and you've been
> careful enough to assign it a low priority in fontconfig there is no
> problem
> Don't forget, that browsers also use system fonts, so if you don't install
> the fonts in a standard place you're forcing all your Fedora web clients
> to download it dynamically from the web site.
>> There is also the case when a package contains both a webfont and a
>> desktop font (with different ttf files).  Something like a
>> /usr/share/fonts/webfonts for fonts packaged solely as a web static
>> resource might possibly be a solution, I guess (?)
> Well as we've established there:
> 1. the only "useful" webfont format is eot (to reach users of old ie
> versions, all major browsers except ie are easily upgradable and support
> normal opentype fonts and there is no restriction on using opentype for
> floss fonts)
> 2. it's only useful for the very narrow range of web applications that use
> bleeding-edge html5 tricks like webfonts but still work with the
> braindamaged web engines included in ie < 9
> So if you wanted to do webfonts, the correct way would be to define a
> filesystem root such as /usr/share/eot-fonts (not a /usr/share/fonts/
> subdirectory, that would pollute fontconfig space)
> But I doubt the intersection of fedora packages, large ie < 9 population,
> html5-webapp, oldie-compatible-webapp amounts to much. So why bother.
> Regards,

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