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Old 11-15-2006, 05:01 AM   #1
Howard White
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Default Another Font Tool

Font Catalog showed up on Version Tracker (Mac) today, and I downloaded the trial version.

It's another tool for organizing and (I guess) managing fonts. It has some odd (to me) ideas about categories.

But it processed ~1,200 fonts on my G4 laptop in about a minute, and it seems to allow you to make up your own categories. Shareware, $29.95.

Anyone else used it? Thoughts?

HW
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Old 11-15-2006, 06:43 AM   #2
ktinkel
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Looks interesting, and at a fair price. Think I will download it later.

I wish it had auto-activation, but suppose it is a lot to ask for a $30 app. (And what is “drag and drop activation” I wonder — have you figured that out yet?)

   
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Old 11-15-2006, 09:38 AM   #3
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Originally Posted by ktinkel View Post
I wish it had auto-activation, but suppose it is a lot to ask for a $30 app. (And what is “drag and drop activation” I wonder — have you figured that out yet?)
What is "auto-activation"? "Drag and drop activation" sounds to me like you drag a font file to the application and it will activate it for you.

(I'm in the middle of evaluating a bunch of font management tools - but not a lot have decent support for Unicode. Or non-Unicode encoding formats, like BIG5, for that matter. Both essential for managing my Chinese font files, of course! I need a cross between three apps, or something. A few I could uninstall almost immediately, but four are still in the running.)

   
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Old 11-15-2006, 12:03 PM   #4
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Marjolein:

Quote:
not a lot have decent support for Unicode
I'm putting my faith in Linotype's free offering, which is still vapourware as far as Windows is concerned. The Mac people are quite pleased with their version, so I understand.

I think that 'drag-and-drop' activation is a fancy way of describing a crude process by which you keep the font files separate and activate them by transferring them to the Windows\Fonts folder when they're needed.

   
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Old 11-15-2006, 12:17 PM   #5
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What is "auto-activation"?
Assuming the fonts are installed, though not open or active in the font management program, the font manager automatically activates a font if you open a file that uses it.

With Suitcase and the late-lamented ATM Deluxe, this worked with the standard DTP apps, but not necessarily with all others. (Can’t remember if it worked with Word, but may have.)

   
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Old 11-15-2006, 12:43 PM   #6
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I think that 'drag-and-drop' activation is a fancy way of describing a crude process by which you keep the font files separate and activate them by transferring them to the Windows\Fonts folder when they're needed.
You don't need a tool for that - Windows can do it all on its own - even giving you the choice between copying the file to the Fonts folder or creating a shortcut. But that process (copying/linking to the Fonts folder) is not activation, it's installation. Activation on the Windows platform is I think a Registry-only operation - installed fonts get an entry in the Registry as well as a copy of shortcut in the Fonts folder, and I think activated fonts get only a Registry entry. (Applications can use a font when they can find its reference in the Registry.) The latter would require a tool as the Windows UI itself supports only installation (copy or shortcut).

Then there's the font cache ... a font remains installed/activated (and fully "visible" to applications even when "uninstalled") as long as the font cache isn't refreshed. Some tools claim to do that refreshing for you but it's unreliable. The only reliable way to clear the font cache is to reboot. And then there are tools that keep their own database, of course. Never mind font cache... as long as it's in the database... So management apps tend not to agree on what is installed or activated and what not.

And what's an installed font really? For one font management app it's installed as long as it's in its own database (surviving a reboot); for another it's as long as it's in the font cache; for a third it's as long as it's in the Registry... Uninstalling is interesting, too - quite often a management app tells me it can't do it! Then I have to go to the Fonts directory or even into the Registry to manually remove it from there.

Font management is soooo much fun under Windows!





























not.

   
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Old 11-15-2006, 03:01 PM   #7
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Marjolein:

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You don't need a tool for that - Windows can do it all on its own - even giving you the choice between copying the file to the Fonts folder or creating a shortcut. But that process (copying/linking to the Fonts folder) is not activation, it's installation.
You may—or may not—be right about that. The point is that there is no 'dragging and dropping' with an manager such as ATM de Luxe, but there is in many of the programs that offer font management for $24.99.

By the way, you ought to study font management in the Apple OS; it's complicated enough for you.

   
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