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I am using SecureCRT to SSH to a Linux box with X11 forwarding enabled. When I run xfig it shows up with Xming and everything works except the only font it will show in the diagrams is 6x13. Changing the font always results in that font being used (but the selection being changed). Even choosing fonts xfig seems to have access to (such as an italics font which it uses in the splash screen and of course the font "names" themselves are written in their respective fonts) still just show as 6x13. Also, exporting the diagrams to PDF does end up rendering the fonts correctly so it is strictly a display problem (presumably X server / Xming combined with xfig problem).

The Linux box itself can show xfig stuff just fine. I have setup xming to use the Linux box as a font server. Running xlsfonts lists nearly 9000 font varieties, identical on the Windows and Linux X servers. Using xfontsel does show that these fonts do in fact work and look different either on the Windows or Linux X servers.

A lot of people do seem to have problems with xfig fonts, but they are usually accompanied by error messages. In this case, not so much - no messages what so ever are displayed. When run as xfig -debug I do get some output, but nothing helpful (this is the creation of two text boxes with different fonts - both of which end up loading 6x13 without apparently trying another font):

add_point - alloc 200 points
Loading font 6x13
add depth 50, count=1
Text[50] count=1
New min = 50
New max = 50
Loading font 6x13
add depth 50, count=2
Text[50] count=2

Other pieces of information that may or may not be useful:

  • X client (xfig) is running on a Fedora 20 x64, tested both with a headless and machine with graphics
  • X server (xming) is running on a Windows 7 Pro x64 or Windows 8.1 Pro x64 machine
  • Xfig is 3.2-5c
  • Xming is 7.5.0.47 or 6.9.0.31 (+fonts package, +Windows fonts, +connecting to Fedora 20 machine as font server)
  • xfig is started with xfig -specialtext -latexfonts -startlatexFont default
  • xming is started with default shortcut (`"C:\Program Files (x86)\Xming\Xming.exe" :0 -resize -clipboard -multiwindow -nolisten inet6)
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The problem ended up being in the font server. Xming could not connect to the machines' font servers due to the default security of not listening on a TCP port and the firewall blocking the connection once it was. The necessary changes to the xfs on the X clients were:

  • In /etc/X11/fs/config commenting out the no-listen = tcp line and adding a port = 7100 line
  • Then run: sudo iptables -I INPUT -p tcp --dport 7100 --syn -j ACCEPT to update the firewall
  • Then restarting xfs (sudo service xfs restart) and xming

I still don't understand why xlsfonts and xfontsel seem to work, but xfig is now working (and the Xming logs no longer complain that the tcp/....:7100 font path failed).

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