SETFONT(8)                   International Support                  SETFONT(8)

       setfont - load EGA/VGA console screen font

       setfont   [-O  font+umap.orig]  [-o  font.orig]  [-om  cmap.orig]  [-ou
       umap.orig] [-N] [ ...]  [-m cmap] [-u umap] [-hH] [-v] [-V]

       The setfont command reads a font from the file  and  loads  it
       into the EGA/VGA character generator, and optionally outputs the previ-
       ous font.  It can also load various mapping tables and output the  pre-
       vious versions.

       If  no args are given (or only the option -N for some number N), then a
       default (8xN) font is loaded (see below).  One may give  several  small
       fonts,  all  containing  a Unicode table, and setfont will combine them
       and load the union.  Typical use:

              Load a default font.

       setfont drdos8x16
              Load a given font (here the 448-glyph drdos font).

       setfont cybercafe -u cybercafe
              Load a given font that does not have a Unicode map  and  provide
              one explicitly.

       setfont LatArCyrHeb-19 -m 8859-2
              Load a given font (here a 512-glyph font combining several char-
              acter sets) and indicate that one's local character set  is  ISO

       The  standard  Linux  font  format  is  the  PSF font.  It has a header
       describing font properties like character size, followed by  the  glyph
       bitmaps, optionally followed by a Unicode mapping table giving the Uni-
       code value for each glyph.  Several other (obsolete) font  formats  are
       recognized.  If the input file has code page format (probably with suf-
       fix .cp), containing three fonts with sizes e.g. 8x8,  8x14  and  8x16,
       then  one  of  the options -8 or -14 or -16 must be used to select one.
       Raw font files are binary files of size  256*N  bytes,  containing  bit
       images  for each of 256 characters, one byte per scan line, and N bytes
       per character (0 < N <= 32).  Most fonts have a width of  8  bits,  but
       with the framebuffer device (fb) other widths can be used.

       The  program  setfont has no built-in knowledge of VGA video modes, but
       just asks the kernel to load the character ROM of the video  card  with
       certain  bitmaps.  However,  since  Linux 1.3.1 the kernel knows enough
       about EGA/VGA video modes to select  a  different  line  distance.  The
       default character height will be the number N inferred from the font or
       specified by option. However, the user can specify a different  charac-
       ter height H using the -h option.

       Several  mappings  are involved in the path from user program output to
       console display. If the console is in utf8 mode (see  unicode_start(1))
       then the kernel expects that user program output is coded as UTF-8 (see
       utf-8(7)), and converts that to Unicode (ucs2).  Otherwise, a  transla-
       tion table is used from the 8-bit program output to 16-bit Unicode val-
       ues. Such a translation table is called a Unicode console  map.   There
       are  four  of  them:  three  built into the kernel, the fourth settable
       using the -m option of setfont.  An  escape  sequence  chooses  between
       these four tables; after loading a cmap, setfont will output the escape
       sequence Esc ( K that makes it the active translation.

       Suitable arguments for the -m option are for  example  8859-1,  8859-2,
       ..., 8859-15, cp437, ..., cp1250.

       Given the Unicode value of the symbol to be displayed, the kernel finds
       the right glyph in the font using the Unicode mapping info of the  font
       and displays it.

       Old fonts do not have Unicode mapping info, and in order to handle them
       there are direct-to-font maps (also loaded using -m) that give a corre-
       spondence  between user bytes and font positions.  The most common cor-
       respondence is the one given in the file trivial (where user byte  val-
       ues  are  used  directly as font positions).  Other correspondences are
       sometimes preferable since the PC video hardware expects  line  drawing
       characters in certain font positions.

       Giving a -m none argument inhibits the loading and activation of a map-
       ping table.  The previous console map can be saved to a file using  the
       -om  file option.  These options of setfont render mapscrn(8) obsolete.
       (However, it may be useful to read that man page.)

       The correspondence between the glyphs in the font and Unicode values is
       described  by  a Unicode mapping table.  Many fonts have a Unicode map-
       ping table included in the font file, and  an  explicit  table  can  be
       indicated  using  the  -u  option. The program setfont will load such a
       Unicode mapping table, unless a -u none argument is given. The previous
       Unicode mapping table will be saved as part of the saved font file when
       the -O option is used. It can be saved to a separate file using the -ou
       file option.  These options of setfont render loadunimap(8) obsolete.

       The  Unicode  mapping  table  should  assign some glyph to the `missing
       character' value U+fffd, otherwise missing characters  are  not  trans-
       lated, giving a usually very confusing result.

       Usually  no  mapping  table  is  needed, and a Unicode mapping table is
       already contained in the font (sometimes this is indicated by the .psfu
       extension), so that most users need not worry about the precise meaning
       and functioning of these mapping tables.

       One may add a Unicode mapping table to a psf font using psfaddtable(1).

       -h H   Override font height.

       -m file
              Load console map or Unicode console map from file.

       -o file
              Save previous font in file.

       -O file
              Save previous font and Unicode map in file.

       -om file
              Store console map in file.

       -ou file
              Save previous Unicode map in file.

       -u file
              Load Unicode table describing the font from file.

       -v     Be verbose.

       -V     Print version and exit.

       //lib/kbd/consolefonts     is     the     default    font    directory.
       //lib/kbd/unimaps  is  the  default   directory   for   Unicode   maps.
       //lib/kbd/consoletrans  is  the  default directory for screen mappings.
       The default font is a file default (or default8xN if the -N option  was
       given for some number N) perhaps with suitable extension (like .psf).

       psfaddtable(1), unicode_start(1), loadunimap(8), utf-8(7), mapscrn(8)

                                  11 Feb 2001                       SETFONT(8)