Checklist for Troubleshooting TrueType Font Problems

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This article describes common causes of display and/or printing problems you may encounter when using TrueType fonts with Microsoft Windows version 3.1. The article is designed to be a troubleshooting checklist to assist you in diagnosing and resolving these problems.

More Information

Earlier Printer Drivers

Printer drivers written for versions of Microsoft Windows earlier than version 3.1 were not designed to work with TrueType font technology. If you are using one of these earlier printer drivers, TrueType fonts usually will not appear on a font list in an application. Check the version number of your printer driver (usually by choosing the About button in the printer driver's dialog box). If you are using an earlier driver, switch to a different printer driver to see if the TrueType font problems are eliminated, or update the earlier printer driver to the most recent Windows version 3.1 release of the driver.

NOTE: Some applications do not query the printer driver for the list of available fonts (Microsoft Excel for Windows is one such example), which causes the application to show the TrueType fonts as available when they are not.

If TrueType fonts display properly in Windows Paintbrush, Windows Character Map, and Microsoft Excel but not in Windows Write and Microsoft Word for Windows, you may be using the HPPCL.DRV, HPPCL5A.DRV, or DESKJET.DRV driver from an earlier version of Windows. These drivers may be identified by file dates prior to 3/10/92.

To Correct the Problem

  1. Delete the driver from the WINDOWS\SYSTEM directory.
  2. Install the new driver from the Windows 3.1 disks. Note that DESKJET.DRV is now HPDSKJET.DRV.
  3. Make the printer your default printer.

Enabling TrueType Settings

Make sure that TrueType is turned on (or off) as required by your printer. To do this, run Control Panel, and choose the Fonts icon. Choose the TrueType button, select the desired options, and choose the OK button.

Printing TrueType As Graphics

If you print a document that is formatted for a TrueType font using the HP LaserJet Series II printer driver and the printer form feeds after it prints a line of text, you may need to select the Print TrueType As Graphics option in the Printer Setup dialog box.

The following list describes the download capabilities of each HP LaserJet printer model. It also describes how Windows version 3.1 handles the downloading of TrueType fonts by default.

  • HP LaserJet, LaserJet Plus, and LaserJet 500 (all PCL III)

    When these models are selected, TrueType fonts are always printed as graphics, and are only available when the printer resolution is set at 300 dots per inch (dpi).
  • HP LaserJet Series II, IIP, IID (all PCL IV)

    TrueType fonts are downloaded. If you want to print more than 16 fonts on a page, select the Print TrueType As Graphics option.
  • HP LaserJet Series III family (all PCL V)

    TrueType fonts are downloaded. If you want to print more than 16 fonts on a page, you must switch to the graphics band.
NOTE: In general, if you choose the Print TrueType As Graphics option, printing speed will decrease.

PostScript: TrueType Settings in Driver

If you are using a PostScript printer, there are TrueType options in the printer driver that determine whether TrueType fonts are downloaded. In the printer driver's Setup dialog box, choose the Options button. Choose the Advanced button; the settings in this dialog box determine whether the printer uses printer fonts or TrueType fonts and the type of download font (that is, Type 1 or Type 3). The fastest settings are generally the default settings for this driver, as follows:

Send To Printer As: Adobe Type 1
Use Printer Fonts For All TrueType Fonts: not selected
Use Substitution Table: selected

Substitution Table

Arial Helvetica
Times New Roman Times
Courier New Courier
Symbol Symbol
Wingdings Download As Soft Font

LaserJet: Printer Settings in Driver

On earlier models of the Hewlett-Packard (HP) LaserJet printers (original, Plus, and 500), the printer resolution should be set to 300 dpi. This is because TrueType fonts on these printers are not available at lower resolutions.

On later models, there is an option to print TrueType fonts as graphics. This is used to override the downloading of PCL fonts. It is useful in cases where the limitations of PCL fonts need to be overridden by the graphics device interface (GDI) to create special effects. (For example, PCL IV printers cannot print white text on a black background. However, printing TrueType fonts as graphics enables this.) If the printer resolution is set below 300 dpi, the Print TrueType As Graphics check box is grayed.

Canon Printers

The Canon laser printer drivers that ship with Windows version 3.1 require that the resolution of the driver be set to at least 300 dpi.

Incorrect Printer Model Selected for HP LaserJet Printers

TrueType prints differently to different models of the HP LaserJet family. On earlier LaserJet printers (original, Plus, and 500) TrueType ALWAYS prints TrueType fonts as graphics because these older printers do not support the downloaded PCL fonts TrueType creates. Series II printers have a soft font page limit of 16 fonts per page. Later models do not have these limitations. Mismatching the model will cause TrueType to attempt to optimize for the wrong type of printer, causing either incorrect output (pages only partially filled, wrong fonts printing, text overprinting, and so on), or needlessly slow output.

"Bad" Fonts

A "bad" or incompatible font can cause a wide variety of problems, including (but not limited to) the following:

  • Error messages (for example, "Invalid TrueType Font Detected," "Divide By Zero")
  • Blank text on screen
  • Incorrect line spacing
  • Corrupt output
  • System crashes
NOTE: The "bad" font does not have to be in use to cause problems; it merely needs to be installed. To troubleshoot the problem, remove the font. If the behavior does not persist, the font is the cause of the problem.

Another cause of the problems listed above is a bad .FOT file, which must be rebuilt. You can usually resolve this problem by reinstalling the font using the Windows Control Panel or the installation program that came with your soft font package.

For more information on installing fonts using the Windows Control Panel, see pages 164-168 of the "Microsoft Windows User's Guide" for version 3.1.

Old Video Drivers

Old video drivers cause some of the same problems as those caused by old printer drivers. To determine whether your video driver is causing problems with TrueType fonts, switch to a standard Windows version 3.1 video driver (for example, VGA).

For more information on changing video drivers, see page 82 of the "Microsoft Windows User's Guide" for version 3.1.

Missing Font Files

The font files for TrueType fonts are referenced in the [fonts] section of the Windows WIN.INI file. For example:

Arial (TrueType)=ARIAL.FOT
Arial Bold (TrueType)=ARIALBD.FOT
Arial Bold Italic (TrueType)=ARIALBI.FOT
Arial Italic (TrueType)=ARIALI.FOT
Courier New (TrueType)=COUR.FOT
(and so on)
The .FOT file is used by Windows to reference the .TTF file, which is the actual TrueType font file. If either of these files is missing, Windows will behave unpredictably. Typical behavior includes error messages, blank text, screen failing to redraw properly, and incorrect font mapping. Always verify that an .FOT file and a corresponding .TTF file exist for each entry in the [fonts] section of the WIN.INI file.

Incorrect Printer Driver Memory Settings

Windows uses the printer driver memory setting to determine the best way to print TrueType fonts. This is a dynamic process; if the memory setting does not match the exact amount of memory available on the printer, TrueType may not print correctly.

White on Black

If you are using white TrueType text on a black background, the type does not show up.


"Microsoft Windows User's Guide," version 3.1, pages 82, 164-168


문서 ID: 85286 - 마지막 검토: 2006. 11. 16. - 수정: 1