NewDeal Hot Tip 1407

[Hot Tips for...] Fonts

Font Names and ID Numbers

This tip involves some technical issues and is intended for advanced users. Use this information at your own risk.

You can change the DOS filename of a NewDeal font file, no problem. NewDeal looks "inside" the font files for the internal (menu) name and ID number, and ignores the DOS file name, except the file name extension must remain .FNT.

In version 1.x of NewDeal software, the order in which the fonts appear in the menus in NewWrite, NewDraw, and NewBanner is based on the order of the font files on your hard drive. If you copy the font files to an newly created subdirectory, the fonts will appear in the order in which you copied them. If you use a utility which sorts all the files on your hard drive in alphabetical order (like many disk defragmenter programs do), then the fonts will appear in that order, alphabetically by the DOS filename. Since the DOS filename is not the same as the internal font name, the fonts may not appear in alphabetical order by the names in the menus.

Starting in version 2.0, the font files auotmatically appear alphabetized in the font menu and font tool.

To change the menu name of a font, you need to use a disk editor. We use the disk editors in Norton Utilities or PCTools, but many others are available. Do not use a disk editor if you don't know what you are doing... and back up, backup, backup everything before messing around with a disk editor. Mistakes made while using a disk editor can destroy the data on your drive!

Okay, warnings aside, the font ID number is two bytes in lowbyte/highbyte order: the ninth and tenth bytes in the file (bytes 08 and 09, if you count the first byte as 00). The internal font name starts at the 14th byte (0D, hex).

If you see null bytes (bytes of value 00) following the internal font name, then you can make the name longer, provided you leave at least one of these null bytes at the end of the new name.

Do NOT change the internal name or ID number of the original font files that come with the NewDeal software package. Newdeal needs to be able to find some of these fonts in order to operate properly. Also, be aware that when you change a font's internal name or ID number, any documents previously created with that font will no longer display that font.

While we don't recommend you remove any fonts from the \FONT directory, here's some information about which fonts are used for what purpose. The only fonts that are absolutely required are UNIVERSI.FNT and BERKELEY.FNT. If you intend to use NewComm, then you must keep the BISON.FNT. If you intend to use NewWrite or NewDraw, you should keep ROMAN.FNT. If you intend to use the Calculator desk tool, you must keep LED.FNT. If you intend to use NewCalc or to print with NewPlanner, you must keep SANS.FNT. If you use Text File Editor, you need URW Mono in order to print.

A customer reports: "I have taken to renaming (DOS name) all my font files using the convention that is used in the NewDeal Font Packs--which is the same way that the Nimbus Font Converter names the font files that it imports--the first four letters of the internal (menu) font name followed by the font ID number in highbyte/lowbyte hexadecimal value. (The reason the font ID seems "backwards" from the way it appears when you look inside the font file with a disk editor is because 16 bit numbers are typically stored in lowbyte/highbyte format in the PC's memory or in files on disk. By convention, we reverse the two bytes into highbyte/lowbyte form when we discuss the number.)

"ID numbers in the range E000 to EFFF have been assigned to MicroLogic for their use. Numbers in the range D000 to DFFF have been assigned to ATech (AllType). Numbers below C000 are used by NewDeal. At this time, a safe range for us to use for our own purposes is C000 to CFFF.

"By the way, I named (DOS file names) the original 20 fonts that come with my NewDeal software slightly differently so that after sorting my fonts alphabetically, they always show up first."

Return to Index

Last Modified 2 Mar 1999