Chinese fonts in Debian

Desired effect: Everything (menu, console, etc.) in default locale (i.e. English). Able to display Chinese web page and emails nicely. Switchable Chinese input for any application. References [1], [2], [3]. and [4] (for scim setup).

1. generate locales

dpkg-reconfigure locales

en_US.ISO-8859-1
en_US.UTF-8
zh_CN.GB2312
zh_CN.UTF-8
zh_CN.GBK
zh_TW.BIG5
zh_TW.UTF-8

I use en_US.UTF-8 as my default locale.

2. add deb http://apt.debian.org.tw/ unstable main/ttf-arphic-newsung to /etc/apt/sources.list. ttf-arphic-newsung appears to be the font edited by firefly.

Install these essential Chinese fonts

apt-get install ttf-arphic-newsung
apt-get install ttf-arphic-ukai ttf-arphic-uming
apt-get install ttf-arphic-gbsn00lp ttf-arphic-bkai00mp ttf-arphic-bsmi00lp ttf-arphic-gkai00mp

Optional English fonts

apt-get install ttf-bitstream-vera ttf-dejavu
apt-get install msttcorefonts

I don’t recommend editing the font.conf and local.conf as suggested in Ref 4, since doing so will render the English fonts ugly. IMHO, the Chinese fonts, with anti-aliasing, look just as good, if not better, without the modification.

3. scim input set up

apt-get install scim scim-pinyin

4. creates ~/.xinput.d/en_US symbolic link to /etc/X11/xinit/xinput.d/scim.

im-switch -z en_US -s scim

It will complain about not finding scim-pinyin configuration, but works correctly after next login.

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7 Responses to Chinese fonts in Debian

  1. […] Chinese fonts for Debian […]

  2. […] Chinese fonts for Debian […]

  3. linux distros for laptops…

    […]Chinese fonts in Debian « Gordon's Toy[…]…

  4. Neil says:

    Personally, I find ibus to be a much better choice for Chinese input than scim. Install the packages ibus and ibus-pinyin, they will pull in a couple of libraries they need automatically. You will also need to install some Chinese fonts.

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