No subpixel antialiasing in OOo

Bug #138493 reported by Bartosz Zielinski
10
Affects Status Importance Assigned to Milestone
freetype (Ubuntu)
New
Undecided
Unassigned
openoffice.org (Baltix)
New
Undecided
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Bug Description

Binary package hint: libfreetype6

This bug exists in Feisty and Gutsy, I've checked both of them, but probably this bug emerged when OOo started to use freetype 2.

After enabling sub-pixel anti-aliasing in System->Preferences->Appearance->Fonts all applications that use shared libfreetype6 have anti-aliased fonts. But in OOo this doesn't work due to the fact, that it has it's own, statically linked, libfreetype6 with those features disabled.

http://www.openoffice.org/FAQs/fontguide.html#4

I assume that if OOo would be built with the byte hinting option enabled, then this would solve this issue.

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Gert Kulyk (gkulyk) wrote :

No, it does not. In Ubuntu ooo is using system-libfreetype (upstream is able to do so, too, but at least it had troubles with freetype >=2.2).

It is rather related to the fact that upstream-ooo is ignoring fontconfig-rendering-settings, e.g. if your system-libfreetype has enabled bytecode-interpreter, it will always use it, no matter what setting you are using.

Ubuntu, Fedora and Debian (maybe some more distros), are including patches to get extended fontconfig-support, which is not complete, though. The problem is, that the best hinting style you will be able to get at the moment is grayscale-hinting, maybe some future upstream-release will fix this.

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hasi (whynot-nurfuerspam) wrote :

I notice the same problem with Kubuntu 7.04 (using libfreetype6/libcairo2/libxft2 packages) and OpenOffice 2.2: the fonts in almost all applications look perfect to me. However, in OOo, the font smoothing is of substantially lower quality. I can confirm that there is some font smoothing in OOo by turning the corresponding option off in OOo: it will get totally unsmoothed.
As far as I can tell, this thread is about exactly this problem (let me know if not). However, I am not as knowledgeable as the previous two posters and thus do not really understand what their comments mean. My questions is: knowing what you told me, is there anything I can tweak in OOo (or the system) in order to get higher-quality visual experience in OOo?
Thanks very much for you help.
--hasi.

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Gert Kulyk (gkulyk) wrote :

To hasi: What I was trying to say is that at the moment there is no way to get better results until there are some substantial changes made by the programmers of openoffice.org.

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Martin Waldburger (waldburger-gmail) wrote :

Gert,

as I see from your statement that it's up to OO.o programmers to respect subpixel antialiasing, and provided that Gutsy features now a real nice subpixel antialiasing, is there a chance to put some pressure on upstream (in a polite way, of course)?

Best regards,
Martin

Revision history for this message
Gert Kulyk (gkulyk) wrote :

In short: I don't think so, at least not until you are providing the required patches :-). The same applies to distribution-specific patches, I don't think the ubuntu openoffice-scribblers-team has enough resources to fix it on their own. For Gutsy there is rather no chance at all, sad but true.

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Gert Kulyk (gkulyk) wrote :

To get an idea how upstream version does look like in the current state, I've attached a screenshot showing staroffice-writer using system-libfreetype in gutsy. If you compare this to gutsy ooo, you have to agree that openoffice.org-scribblers team has done a lot of work to include patches that are enhancing the look and feel.

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hasi (whynot-nurfuerspam) wrote :

Gert:
Sorry, I do not know how everything is connected here. Does "upstream StarOffice 8" automatically mean it is going to be included into OOo at some point? Or are there even any public developer builds that already have this very cool feature? I am really hungry to get it!
Thanks so much.
--hasi.

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