From Free Software Directory
Revision as of 14:26, 6 August 2021 by Panos Alevropoulos (talk | contribs)
(diff) ← Older revision | Latest revision (diff) | Newer revision → (diff)
Jump to: navigation, search


A library for configuring and customizing font access.

fontconfig is a library for customizing and configuring fonts in a system, providing configuration, enumeration and substitution of fonts to other programs.

Applications can use fontconfig in two ways:

  • by querying it for the available fonts on the system, or
  • by querying it for a font matching certain parameters (comprising a pattern) as closely as possible.

To perform font matching, fontconfig stores typesetting information about all of the installed fonts, including the name of the font family, style, weight, dots per inch (DPI), and Unicode coverage. This information is also used to perform font substitution.


fontconfig can:

  • discover new fonts when installed automatically, removing a common source of configuration problems.
  • perform font name substitution, so that appropriate alternative fonts can be selected if fonts are missing.
  • identify the set of fonts required to completely cover a set of languages.
  • have GUI configuration tools built as it uses an XML-based configuration file (though with autodiscovery, we believe this need is minimized).
  • efficiently and quickly find the fonts you need among the set of fonts you have installed, even if you have installed thousands of fonts, while minimizing memory usage.
  • be used in concert with the X Render Extension and FreeType to implement high quality, anti-aliased and subpixel rendered text on a display.

fontconfig does not:

  • render the fonts themselves (this is left to FreeType or other rendering mechanisms)
  • depend on the X Window System in any fashion, so that printer only applications do not have such dependencies




Verified by

Verified on




Verified by

Panos Alevropoulos

Verified on

6 August 2021

Leaders and contributors

Resources and communication

Software prerequisites


"MIT" is not in the list (ACEL, AFL-3.0, AGPL-1.0, AGPL-1.0-or-later, AGPL-3.0, AGPL-3.0-or-later, AGPL-3.0-or-later-with-exception, AGPL-3.0-with-exception, AGPLv1orlater, AGPLv3, ...) of allowed values for the "License" property.

Property "Submitted by" (as page type) with input value "{{{Submitted by}}}" contains invalid characters or is incomplete and therefore can cause unexpected results during a query or annotation process. "{{{Submitted date}}}" contains an extrinsic dash or other characters that are invalid for a date interpretation.

Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.3 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts, and no Back-Cover Texts. A copy of the license is included in the page “GNU Free Documentation License”.

The copyright and license notices on this page only apply to the text on this page. Any software or copyright-licenses or other similar notices described in this text has its own copyright notice and license, which can usually be found in the distribution or license text itself.