Sunday, April 20, 2008

Brain Dump: embedding fonts in OpenOffice PDF's

This is little more than a brain-dump post relating to OpenOffice Writer, True Type fonts, and the PDF encoder.

I happen to make frequent use of the PDF creator in OpenOffice. One issue I've run into a few times, however, is the rendered PDF's will not display the correct font. When I open the PDF, I find the font hasn't even been embedded, and some kind of substitution (usually MS Arial) will occur. Most frustrating, this occurs with one of my favorite fonts, Adobe's Myriad Pro.

It turns out the issue is related to the way PDF files handle fonts, specifically, fonts that are not freely shared, and not embeddable. Myriad Pro is one of these fonts.

Apparently, a font-maker can decide whether or not they want their fonts to be embeddable. If they choose "no", OpenOffice's PDF creator will (correctly) honor that wish, and embed a substituted font.

If you're on a Microsoft operating system, I'd suggest using only MS fonts in documents that are destined for PDF. There are a bazillion embeddable TrueType fonts available.
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EDIT: 11/2011 - here is a more detailed conversation re: Open Office and fonts in PDF files.

5 comments:

TroyWorks said...

Me too,
Found a workaround, You can use PDF995 to print the document as PDF and it will render the Myriad Pro family correctly.

ChristoJ said...

¿ PDF995 ? what's that then?

Jeremiah said...

http://www.pdf995.com/

Was that so hard?

Anonymous said...

thank you, this pdf995 trick did its job :)

De McClung said...

I am required by my printer company to embed fonts before I submit my pdf document to them. Trouble is. I don't know how and I cannot find any instructions in the help section or here. If OO automatically embeds the font, standard ones, when I convert the document to pdf, then why would the printer make an issue of ME doing it manually? I don't understand. I cannot find ANY mention of embedding fonts on the toolbar menus.