fonts−config − configures installed X11 fonts.


fonts-config [ OPTION ]...


−−force−hintstyle string

By default, "hintstyle" is chosen depending on value of autohint for given font. Apart from exceptions (e. g. IPA fonts for example): for fonts, with good instructions*) "hintfull" used and for other fonts "hintslight" is used. You can enforce hintstyle here. Possible values are "none", "hintnone", "hintslight", "hintmedium" and "hintfull". This option can be overriden by −−force−bw* options, where "hintfull" is always used.

*) see /usr/share/doc/packages/fonts−config/infinality/good−hinted−tt−fonts.list for reference


By default, FreeType’s autohinter is used for fonts, which have no or not good native hinting instructions. You can enforce to use autohinter even for fonts with good instructions*) with this option. hintstyle="hintslight" is used then, when −−force−hintstyle do not everrides it.

*) see /usr/share/doc/packages/fonts−config/infinality/good−hinted−tt−fonts.list for fonts with good hinting instructions


FreeType is instructed to use antialias (font smoothing) in rendering by default. You can override this settings with this option, which means that fonts will not bee smoothed but contranst with background will be high, which can suit one’s eyes. Liberation Sans family is then automatically prefered over DejaVu Sans. Force using bitmap strikes from the font. Hintstlyle is forced to "hintfull" (this even overrides −−force−hintstyle option).

This can produce bitmap quality rendering for good instructed fonts.


This option has lower impact than −−force−bw. Sets black and white rendering only for good hinted monospaced fonts (e. g. Liberation Mono). "hintfull" hintstyle is used.

−−lcd−filter string

Defines lcd filter to be used. If not overriden by this option, "lcdnone" is used. Possible values are "lcdnone", "lcddefault", "lcdlight" and "lcdlegacy".

−−rgba string

Defines lcd subpixel arrangement and orientation for your monitor. Default value is "none". Possible values are "none", "rgb", "vrgb", "bgr", "vbgr", "unknown".


Use (or don’t use) embedded bitmaps from font.

−−ebitmapslang string

Limit use of embedded bitmaps to specified in string separated by colons.

−−sans−families string

Given colon-separated list of prefered sans families, they will be prefered over system preference list of sans families*).

*) see /etc/fonts/conf.d/60−family−prefer.conf for details

−−mono−families string

Given colon-separated list of prefered monospace families, they will be prefered over system preference list of monospace families*).

*) see /etc/fonts/conf.d/60−family−prefer.conf for details

−−serif−families string

Given colon-separated list of prefered serif families, they will be prefered over system preference list of serif families*).

*) see /etc/fonts/conf.d/60−family−prefer.conf for details


Value of −−*−families can be overriden when document or GUI is requesting metric compatible font as defined
in /etc/fonts/conf.d/30−metric−aliases.conf, e. g. request to Times New Roman will get Liberation Serif even if other family is explicitely prefered by −−serif−families option. (hint, that’s because binding="same" in that fontconfig)

You can change this default behaviour with −−nometric, but be careful with that. Metric compatibility means that every glyph, say ’A’, has the same width and height in both fonts, so document should have same line wraps for example.


Value of −−*−families can be overriden, when document or GUI is requesting some particular font. This is very often intended.

With −−forcefpl, it is possible to override all such requests with fonts listed in family preference lists (FPLs).


Generate (or don’t generate) TTCap entries. TTCap entries can be used with the xtt module and with recent versions of the freetype module.


Generate (or don’t generate) font setup for Java.

−f, −−force

Force the update of all generated files even if it appears to be unnecessary according to the time stamps.

−q, −−quiet

Work silently, unless an error occurs.

−v, −−verbose

Print some progress messages to standard output.

−d, −−debug

Print a lot of debugging messages to standard output.


Display version and exit.

−h, −−help

Display a short help message and exit.


Configures installed X11 fonts. Basically it does the following things:
creates fonts.scale and fonts.dir files

fonts-config currently assumes all fonts installed in /usr/share/fonts tree.

For each subdirectory, the time stamps of the directory, the fonts.scale file, the fonts.dir file and an extra time stamp file .fonts−config−timestamp are checked. If not all the time stamps are equal or any of these files is missing, the fonts.scale and fonts.dir files will be updated as follows:

First, fonts.scale file is created by calling mkfontscale.

Then, the entries found in the fonts.scale file are merged with the entries from all fonts.scale.* files.

fonts.scale.* files may be supplied by rpm-packages or manually added by the user to override or amend the entries created automatically by mkfontscale. Entries in a fonts.scale.* file have higher priority than entries automatically created by mkfontscale. All entries generated automatically by mkfontscale for a certain font file are discarded if any fonts.scale.* file contains an entry for the same font file.

After the final list of entries has been written back to fonts.scale, mkfontdir is called.

Finally, the time stamps of the directory, fonts.scale, fonts.dir, and .fonts−config−timestamp are set to the time when fonts-config started.

generate rendering options

Generates /etc/fonts/conf.d/10−rendering−options.conf according to rendering options or its bound sysconfig variables. See −−force−hintstyle, −−force−autohint, −−force−bw, −−force−bw−monospace, −−lcdfilter, −−rgba, −−ebitmaps, −−ebitmapslang options.

call fc-cache

creates cache files for fonts to use with client side font rendering via fontconfig/libXft, for details see fc−cache(1). fonts.cache−2 cache files are generated in /var/cache/fontconfig for all directories which are configured in /etc/fonts/fonts.conf and all their subdirectories.

Usually fonts-config is called automatically when package containing font is installed, upgraded or removed. But you can also execute fonts-config directly, which is mainly useful to debug it (use −−debug flag).



Default values for some command line options of fonts-config are read from this file if it exists. The options currently supported in this file are:


can be set to "none", "hintfull", "hintmedium" , "hintslight" or "hintnone" and is bound to −−force−hintstyle option.


can be set to "yes" or "no" and is bound to −−force−autohint option.


can be set to "yes" or "no" and is bound to −−force−bw option.


can be set to "yes" or "no" and is bound to −−force−bw−monospace option.


can be set to "lcdnone", "lcddefault", "lcdlight" and "lcdlegacy" and is bound to −−lcdfilter option.


can be set to "none", "rgb", "vrgb", "bgr", "vrgb" or "unknown" and is bound to −−rgba option.


can be set to "yes" or "no" and sets the default for the option −−ebitmaps.


can be set to colon separated list of languages, sets the default for the −−ebitmapslang


can be set to colon separated list of sans families, bound to the −−sans−families option.


can be set to colon separated list of serif families, bound to the −−serif−families option.


can be set to colon separated list of monospace families, bound to the −−mono−families option.


can be set to "yes" or "no" and is bound to −−(no)metric option.


can be set to "yes" or "no" and is bound to −−(no)forcefpl option.


can be set to "yes" or "no" and sets the default for the option −−(no)ttcap.


can be set to "yes" or "no" and sets the default for the option −−(no)java.


fc−cache(1), cidfont−x11−config(1), mkfontdir(1), mkfontscale(1)


Mike FABIAN, 2003, Petr Gajdos <>, 2014.


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