# [dvipdfmx] pfa font -> misleading message

Karl Berry karl at freefriends.org
Sun Sep 8 00:24:17 CEST 2019

I believe dvipdfmx does not support pfa fonts. Is that correct?
That's understandable, but the error message is misleading.

For example, TL has a font "pigpen" which is only available as a pfa (I
don't know what it is :). Consider:

$xetex -no-pdf '\font\x=pigpen \x ABCDE\end' .. Output written on texput.xdv (1 page, 280 bytes).$ xdvipdfmx texput.xdv
..
xdvipdfmx:warning: Could not locate a virtual/physical font for TFM "pigpen".
xdvipdfmx:warning: >> This font is mapped to a physical font "pigpen.pfa".
xdvipdfmx:warning: >> Please check if kpathsea library can find this font: pigpen.pfa
xdvipdfmx:fatal: Cannot proceed without .vf or "physical" font for PDF output...

As far as I can tell, the problem here is not that kpathsea could not
find the font, but that xdvipdfmx couldn't do anything with it. So It
would be better if the message checked if the "physical font" was a .pfa
and said something like
xdvipdfmx:fatal:sorry, pfa format not supported; please convert the font to pfb, e.g., with t1binary

Wdyt? --thanks, karl.