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Is it possible to use TrueType monosize fonts in console with framebuffer driver (vesafb)? I'm using Ubuntu.

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

Yes, it can be done with this type of setup. None of these require the installation of an X Server.

  1. FrameBuffer support

  2. Fontconfig + FreeType2 + TTF Fonts

  3. Framebuffer terminal which supports Fontconfig

fbcon does not support this type of setup. I have used fbterm, It looks great and is very fast.

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Thanx. That's nice and seems to be working. – Kirill V. Lyadvinsky Sep 19 '11 at 5:04
your welcome! I actually have seen even more insane framebuffer console setups. All without X server, Here is a well known example:… – TechZilla Sep 19 '11 at 13:36

It should be. OK, well, it all depends on what you're doing.

TTFs aren't supported in the kernel, and the kernel's console fonts are all you get at boot time. With the in-kernel console framebuffer, fbcon, the only fonts available are those included when the kernel was compiled. I'd be suprised if the kernel includes code to render TTFs. If you want TTFs during boot, you're probably out of luck.

But if you can wait until after boot, you can load an X server and make use of it's font renderers, which support TTFs last time I checked. If you're working on an application, this is probably where you'll need the fonts anyway, so you should be good.

Here's kernel documentation on vesafb (and links to fbcon and the generic kernel framebuffer). I haven't found any documentation on the kernel's console fonts, but there should be some in there somewhere.

This ancient Framebuffer HOWTO is all I could find that specifically talks about fonts, and it doesn't say much -- this is specifically talking about the kernel's console fonts:

To get the capability to change fonts, you need kbd-0.99 [...] you will be able to load international fonts [...] into your console device

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