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A standard ArchLinux desktop installation provides an excellent font support, with the latest stable versions of the X server, freetype2 (with bytecode interpreter enabled) and fontconfig. For more information on font configuration please see: Font Configuration

Different Kinds of Fonts

There exists different kinds of fonts for Linux.

  • bitmap fonts (.pcf .bdf .pcf.gz .bdf.gz)
  • PostScript fonts (.pfa .pfb)

(pfa: ascii format; pfb: binary format)

  • TrueType/OpenType fonts (.ttf)

(OpenType fonts with quadratic outlines have also .ttf suffix)

  • PostScript flavored OpenType fonts (.otf)
  • TeX bitmap fonts (.pk)

(usually automatically generated from the METAFONT source .mf)

  • TeX virtual fonts (.vf)

Installing fonts

See Adding fonts (to be shortened and merged here)

Font Packages in Archlinux

NB: This is a selective list, but it does also include most font packages from AUR.

  • Thai
    • ttf-thai - font covering glyphs for thai
  • Khmer
    • ttf-khmer - font covering glyphs for khmer language
  • Braille
    • ttf-ubraille - font containing symbols for braille (unicode)
  • “Programmer's fonts” (for coding and terminal display)

Best fonts for terminal

this section needs to be rewritten (--firmicus 12:36, 17 November 2006 (PST))

The best fonts for a terminal depends on what terminal emulator you are using and what features it supports(it even depends on how your fonts.dir looks, as sometimes fonts get installed "incorrectly"), it also depends on how you have configured your x-server, if you use freetype2 or freetype1, if you use the autohinter with the bytecode interpreter compiled into freetypeN,if you have compiled in the BI but doesn't use the autohinter,if you have not compiled in the BI and use the autohinter, if you have not compiled in the BI but uses the autohinter.

Regardless of that, I believe that after spending two days of downloading and trying fonts as recommended as "the best" of people on irc i've finally found myself a favorite:

Terminus (v4.09 in tehdely repository "xserver-terminus-fonts" ) @

Of the rejected were all the fonts i had(all microsoft fonts in addition) as well as other good but not better, like:

Lucida Typewriter, bitstream vera mono, courier, Terminal, Test, Gamov, default8x16, monospace, [...]

of which i liked Test, Terminal and Gamov best. But Terminus beat them all :)

The various terminal emulators i used were: Terminal, Tilda and xterm.

example on howto use Terminus:

xterm -bg black -fg gray -fn -xos4-terminus-medium-r-normal--14-140-72-72-c-80-iso8859-1
xterm -bg black -fg gray -fn -xos4-terminus-bold-r-normal--14-140-72-72-c-80-iso8859-1