Pango-WARNING **: shaping failure, expect ugly output

Bug #1639513 reported by Tong Sun on 2016-11-05
This bug affects 2 people
Affects Status Importance Assigned to Milestone
pango1.0 (Ubuntu)

Bug Description

Exactly as reported in, which was marked as "Invalid" because it is reporting to the wrong package.

The problem from that post:


$ evince

(evince:8959): Pango-WARNING **: failed to create cairo scaled font, expect ugly output. the offending font is 'Ubuntu 11'
(evince:8959): Pango-WARNING **: font_face status is: out of memory
(evince:8959): Pango-WARNING **: scaled_font status is: out of memory
(evince:8959): Pango-WARNING **: shaping failure, expect ugly output. shape-engine='BasicEngineFc', font='Ubuntu 11', text='●'

As for mine, it is basically the same:

(process:13924): Pango-WARNING **: failed to create cairo scaled font, expect ugly output. the offending font is '微软雅黑 9'
(process:13924): Pango-WARNING **: font_face status is: file not found
(process:13924): Pango-WARNING **: scaled_font status is: file not found
(process:13924): Pango-WARNING **: shaping failure, expect ugly output. shape-engine='PangoFcShapeEngine', font='微软雅黑 9', text='Ayg'

As the result,

For the original reported, "some font and only displays squares in menus, text is displayed okay,", but for me, everything are displays as squares in menus, including English texts.

However, my rxvt-unicode, which uses the 微软雅黑 font, display correctly without any problem.

The cause of the problem, is also exactly as described in the original post:

It happens because of symlinks from /usr/share/fonts to a different partition. For the original reporter, some fonts are symlinked, and for me 微软雅黑 is symlinked to a different partition. Thus his is missing some text, while I'm missing everything.

symlinking fonts to a different partition is quite harmless in my view, and Pango should not treat them any differently.

This only happens since Ubuntu 16.04. In Ubuntu 15.10, it was OK.

My current Pango related packages that exhibit such problem:


Please look into it. Thx.

Tong Sun (suntong001) wrote :

To duplicate the problem:

1. Find the first match of the font used for Pango menu:

$ fc-match -s sans-serif | head -1
msyh.ttc: "微软雅黑" "Regular"

2. Copy & symlink that file into a different partition

3. Reboot! That's important, otherwise, I didn't see the problem or fix the problem.

4. Start evince or any gtk/Pango based application from console.

Launchpad Janitor (janitor) wrote :

Status changed to 'Confirmed' because the bug affects multiple users.

Changed in pango1.0 (Ubuntu):
status: New → Confirmed
Sapa Holliday (saparonia) wrote :

I am using libpango-1.0-0, version 1.38.1-1 and can't open or convert a .swf adobe flash file.

I notice that you are using ... libpango1.0-0:amd64_1.38.1-1

Yet you are also using .... libpango-1.0-0:amd64_1.38.1-1

You might have a conflict there

I have linked mine to your bug report at -

Tong Sun (suntong001) wrote :

That's an entirely different issue, as Manfred has put it,

This is support for Ubuntu only, and not for other operating systems "based on Ubuntu" like elementary OS.

No matter how close you think yours is to Ubuntu, if it is not then it is not.

Please don't spill your own problem over to other unrelated issues. Thanks.

Sapa Holliday (saparonia) wrote :

Tong Sun Please don't be unfriendly.

I saw a similarity in that you have the same two files that conflict in my own example.

I thought if they conflict for me then they may conflict for you.

They are


they are from two different releases

I thought that people having problems with the same files would want to share ideas

I won't comment here again as you don't want me to.

Tong Sun (suntong001) wrote :

Sorry, I apologize. One thing I didn't mention is that this issue was already nearly 2 years old, and has a clear cause, so it is very unlikely to relate to any other recent issues. But anyway. Sorry for my bad attitude.

Sapa Holliday (saparonia) wrote :

Forgiven, I am also sorry if I have wasted anyone's time.

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