What's missing are entries in the
What this file does is provide short names ("aliases") for X Window fonts that are installed. When you try to use a short name that isn't in the file, you get behavior like this when starting xterm:
lansdale:~> xterm -xrm \*font:courr12
xterm: cannot load font "courr12"
(The xterm does come up and runs with a default, different font)
fonts.alias file exists because of the long length of X11 font names. For example, courr12 is the short name for:
[The long names are actually 14 different editable fields stitched together with dashes/hyphens. Run program xfontsel to see them; it will start with all fields showing with an asterisk, meaning not set to something specific.]
Each line in the file begins with a short name (an alias), a blank, then the long name it points/refers to. This way, you don't have to use the long name all the time, just set up an alias and use that. When putting a new line in the file, you decide what the short name will be, only the full X11 name has to have a font file installed on the system.
When I first cut my teeth on Unix systems in the 1990s, I ran across courr12 and later came to desire font it (Courier 'Roman' size 12) for my xterms. On HP/UX and Solaris, the
fonts.alias file already had
courr12, so I could just put
"XTerm*font: courr12" in my
.Xdefaults file and everything would work fine.