[XeTeX] how do I embed fonts into a a xelatex generated pdf?

Zdenek Wagner zdenek.wagner at gmail.com
Thu May 3 11:08:00 CEST 2012

Short answer: you have to buy Helvetica.

Long answer: There are basic 15 PS fonts and basic 35 PDF fonts that
must be according to the specification available everywhere. However,
this requirement is broken even in Adobe products (the author of the
specification) and it is quite common to see different versions of
Times and Helvetica with different metrics (it cost me some money and
damaged output to discover this crucial problem). It is therefore
good (and required by DTP studios and printer houses) to embed all
fonts. These 35 basic fonts are commercial and thus cannot be
distributed with TeX. There are free replacements (from URW and other
vendors). Now you have two options:

1. Embed the replacement fonts possibly losing quality
2. Do not embed the font and hope that the user has either the
commercial font or a replacement font that will not be worse.

Of course option 1 is better unless you know that the user has the
commercial font with exactly the same metrics as you. You have to look
into the manual of your TeX distribution how to instruct it to embed
all fonts (it is done by updmap-sys in TeX Live). If you want to have
fonts with better quality, you can consider using TeX Gyre Heros
instead of Helvetica.

Still one problem remains. You may include images created by tools as
gnuplot or inkscape that insert texts in Helvetica but do not embed
the font. It will need some tweaking depending on the tool.

2012/5/3 Adam Russell <arussell at cs.uml.edu>:
> I am preparing a submission to a conference that requires fonts to be
> embedded in the submitted pdf.
> Even after a bit of googling and searching this list's archives I am not
> sure how to do this.
> I understand that I can see which fonts are embedded using `pdffonts`.
> Here is my pdffonts output:
> name                                 type              emb sub uni object ID
> ------------------------------------ ----------------- --- --- --- ---------
> BWYDTC+NimbusRomNo9L-Medi            Type 1C           yes yes no       4  0
> VBXBTV+NimbusRomNo9L-Regu            Type 1C           yes yes no       5  0
> OJQRUO+CMSY10                        Type 1C           yes yes yes      6  0
> DDDDNJ+NimbusRomNo9L-ReguItal        Type 1C           yes yes no       7  0
> TFUFZE+CMMI10                        Type 1C           yes yes yes     12  0
> SLZBCJ+CMMI7                         Type 1C           yes yes no      13  0
> FJPKJJ+CMSY7                         Type 1C           yes yes yes     14  0
> GXLPLZ+CMR7                          Type 1C           yes yes no      15  0
> BYVRVF+CMEX10                        Type 1C           yes yes yes     16  0
> KDPCRI+CMR10                         Type 1C           yes yes no      17  0
> Helvetica                            Type 1            no  no  no      31  0
> FSEEIM+MSBM10                        Type 1C           yes yes no      53  0
> Helvetica                            Type 1            no  no  no      48  0
> Helvetica                            Type 1            no  no  no      63  0
> Helvetica                            Type 1            no  no  no      88  0
> Helvetica                            Type 1            no  no  no      94  0
> So apparently they are all already embedded except for Helvetica, yes?
> So what is the next step to take in making sure all the fonts are embedded?
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Zdeněk Wagner

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