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Need fonts for DOS box appropriate at 1024x768

mccranie asked
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Last Modified: 2013-12-22
I need to install a font for the DOS box that is appropriate for 1024x768 resolution.  The font needs to be about 12x24, 12x25, or perhaps 12x26 to make it the proper size for a DOS window at 1024x768.    Secondly, it should look good.  That means either a bitmapped font or perhaps a bold True Type font.  (The standard TT fonts are unacceptable.)  Finally, I need to know how to install it so the DOS window can use it.  I have added the 10x20 bitmapped to the DOS box by setting something in system.ini to 8514oem.fon, but I need a better solution.

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McCranie: Microsoft makes available font packages on their free software download site in the Office 95/97 area. Also, Adobe makes available numerous font packages that can be purchased directly from them for next to nothing, and they are referred to as their Adobe Type Manager. The last one I bought was about $19 for 50 fonts. If you need more, let me know. I have a few dos boxes on my system and the highest I was able to go was 13x22 as that was all I had.

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As you suggested, I went to MS / Office 95/97  / FreeStuff / Software downlaods, and I didn't see anything about fonts or DOS box fonts.  Is that the correct location?  I'll check with Adobe.

Save you research these guys do not focus any more on DOS fonts.
Adobe is a leader in TYPE 1 fonts not true type fonts, therefore it won't work (sorry)


I talked to 3 people at microsoft and they didn't know anything.  They did refer me to Bitstream.  I checked the bitstream and adobe web sites and couldn't find anything.  I sent e-mail to each, and I'm waiting for a reply.


I just told you, ADOBE is specialized in POSTCRIPT FONTS (type 1), so don't expect anything from these guys.  Bitstream in the other hand could (and I say COULD) help you if they did maintain fonts for DOS.  I do remember long time ago when these guys teamed with LOTUS 123 to do their WYSIWYG module to make 123 spread sheet look and print better.  These fonts had to be generated on the fly during the installation and would take a lot of disk space as they had to make all sizes and store them on your hard drive.  Now with the new TRUE TYPE FONT there is no more "generating font and store them on your hard drive" they just get generated on the fly whenever you issue a print command. This is the beauty of TTF, but for us as designers it comes VERY SHORT, we have to use TYPE 1 (postcript).

I hope that this information helped you to have a better idea aboutwhat you have to expect.


I had already e-mailed Adobe and Bitstream when I read your message.
I've gotten a reply from Adobe, and they don't seem to have anything (as you thought would be the case).

A TT font of the right size will probably do what I want if it has a bold version.  I'm waiting to hear from Bitstream before I can grade the answer.

McCranie: Adobe does, indeed, have TT fonts. If you'd like (to prove a point) I'll mail you the disk or email you the fonts!


Response to dew_associates:

The big questions, though, are:

can they be installed as fonts for the DOS window?

are they the right size for 1024x768 mode? (i.e. 12x24, 25, or 26)

Are they bold?

I asked Adobe and their e-mail reply just listed where you could buy their fonts.  They didn't answer the question of if they had what I need.


Another comment: the book Windows 95 Secrets says that the Plus! package contains Lucida fonts to replace the fonts in the DOS window.  About 10 days ago I purchased the Plus pack.  Before I opened the disk bag I looked in the documentation and I couldn't find anything about replacement DOS window fonts.  I talked to 3 people at MS plus tech support, and they didn't know anything about it.  So I returned the Plus pack.  

Also, I have gotten the 8514 10x20 bitmapped font there, but it has a couple of problems (1) it is too small for 1024 mode, (2) char #0 and #255 show up as "a".

Sorry, I don't mean to prove you wrong, but when you're right you're right, but this time I guess you're wrong.  I don't know where did you get these TTF fonts but surely they are not from ADOBE... I can post here for you tons of pages but I thought it would be more appropriate to give you this link instead:


but here is a flair in the meantime:

The TrueType(TM) format was developed by Microsoft Corporation and Apple Computer for use in their proprietary operating
environments to improve the low-quality bitmap fonts originally used in those systems

Adobe type offers the following benefits:
Highest Quality--Adobe typefaces offer the highest-quality digital type you can buy. That's because their Type 1 format allows the finer points of each character to be imaged as sharply and accurately as possible, given the resolution of your monitor, printer, imagesetter or film recorder. Because Adobe's highly trained staff analyzes and tests every character as it is created in the Type 1 format, you can be sure typefaces converted from world renowned libraries remain true to the foundry design and that original typefaces are expertly crafted.

Broadest Selection--Comprising over 2,000 typefaces, the Adobe Type Library offers the largest selection of high-quality Type 1
typefaces. Their designs are licensed from the oldest and most respected type foundries in the world, as well as being crafted as Adobe Originals by award- winning contemporary type designers.

Technological Leadership--Adobe Systems is the leader in the field of digital typographic production and design for good reason. The engineers and designers at Adobe Systems are constantly striving to improve the technology that gave birth to high-quality digital type. For example, the most recent development in the design of high-quality original type is Adobe's multiple master technology. It allows a huge variety of typefaces to be generated from a single Type 1 font.

Best regards

McCranie: I understand your post and your question, and the following should address the issues.
Mag: I understand where your coming from, however your post is not from the Adobe ATM (Adobe Type Manager) site, therefore if you were unaware of ATM, your post is logical.
1. I believe it's a given that Windows (in a dos window or screen) requires either a "Bitmap" font or a "TT or True "Type" font.

2. I believe also that you want to add a font or fonts, in either Bitmap or True Type that fit the size and density (bold) of your requirements, eg: 12x??

3. Your system, depending on how you set it up, probably has two font directories, "C:\Windows\Fonts" and maybe "C:\Psfonts". It may also have a thrid based upon any specialized word processing or other graphics software.
Given the forgoing, here's the info as clipped directly from the Adobe ATM readme file.
Adobe Type Manager® version 3.0 for Windows
Release Notes
June 30, 1994
Adobe Type Manager is a trademark of Adobe Systems Incorporated which may be registered in certain jurisdictions. Copyrights 1983–1994 Adobe Systems Incorporated.
All Rights Reserved. U.S. Patent Nos. 5,233,336; 5,255,357; 5,185,818.

This document supplements the Adobe Type Manager User Guide. Topics include:

1.      Disk Contents
2.      Installation Requirements
3.      What’s New in Version 3.0
4.      Multiple Master fonts
5.      Using Third-party and Shareware Fonts
6.      Troubleshooting
7.      Application Notes

1.      Disk Contents

The following files are found on your ATM disk(s):

ATM16.ND_      Compressed version of ATM16.DLL, the program file for
                        Windows Standard mode.
ATM32.ND_      Compressed version of ATM32.DLL, the program file for
                        Windows 386 Enhanced mode
ATMSYS.DR_      Compressed version of ATMSYS.DRV, the ATM System driver
ATMCNTRL.EX_      Compressed version of ATMCNTRL.EXE, the ATM Control Panel
INSTALL.EXE      ATM Installer
INSTALL.CNF      ATM installation configuration file
ATM.CNF            Configuration file used by the Installer to modify ATM.INI.
README.WRI      This README file
TECHREF.WRI      A technical supplement describing ATM functionality not
                        covered in the User Guide.

The compressed files can be expanded manually using the Windows utility EXPAND.EXE. Refer to your Windows manual for details on expanding files. Your disk(s) might also contain a PSFONTS directory. The PSFONTS directory contains PostScript Font Outline (PFB) files, Printer Font Metrics (PFM) files, as well as multiple master font metrics (MMM) files and multiple master instance (PSS) files.

If you received ATM with Adobe Acrobat Exchange, Acrobat Reader, or Acrobat Distiller, you will find two multiple master Substitution Outline (PFB) files and their respective multiple master font  metrics (MMM) files. These files are usually installed into your  PSFONTS directory. These multiple master fonts are required for font substitution when using the Adobe Acrobat family of products.

2.      Installation Requirements

To install the standard retail ATM package, you will need about 1.5 megabytes of free disk space. The actual space requirements depend on the number of fonts included with your particular ATM package. The default directory for PostScript fonts is c:\psfonts. You can, however, install the font files into any directory on any drive.

3.      What’s New in Version 3.0          

ATM version 3.0 introduces multiple master font technology to the Windows environment. Using the Font Creator in the ATM Control Panel, you can create thousands of unique fonts based on a given multiple master outline. See the ATM User Guide for information and instructions on using the Font Creator.

In addition, ATM 3.0 can be installed and run on a shared installation of Windows,  where the Windows program files are shared among one or more users.

You now can add fonts without having to copy the actual font files to a specified target directory. This is especially helpful if you store your fonts in various directories. When you are removing a font, you now have the option to remove the font files from your hard disk. ATM 3.0 requires Windows version 3.1 or greater.
Now here's a clip regarding TT and Bitmap fonts from Microsoft and how windows deals with TT and Bitmap fonts. Granted, some of the info deals with printing issues, but the subject also goes the the issue of rastering and the font cache created by windows.
TrueType fonts are shapes that are described by their outlines. Instead of being composed of bitmaps (as raster fonts are) or lines (as vector fonts are), TrueType fonts consist of a series of contours.
The TrueType downloadable fonts included with Windows 95 support the Arial®, Courier, Symbol, and Times New Roman® font families. The following table shows TrueType files included with Windows 95.
Font name      Normal      Bold      Bold/Italic      Italic

Courier New      COUR.TTF      COURBD.TTF      COURBI.TTF      COURI.TTF
Times New Roman      TIMES.TTF      TIMESBD.TTF      TIMESBI.TTF      TIMESI.TTF
Symbol      SYMBOL.TTF      N/A      N/A      N/A
Wingding      WINGDING.TTF      N/A      N/A      N/A
Note   The Courier New TrueType Font also ships with the OEM character set to support use of Courier New TrueType fonts in MS-DOS – based applications.
TrueType fonts have many benefits over other kinds of Windows 95 fonts:
·      What you see is really what you get, because Windows 95 uses the same font for both screen and printer. You don’t have to think about whether you have a specific point size for a particular printer or for your display.
·      You can scale and rotate TrueType fonts, and their resolution is clear in all sizes and on all output devices that Windows 95 supports.
·      Your document will look the same when printed on different printers. And any printer that uses a Windows 95 universal driver can print TrueType fonts.
·      Your document will look the same if you move it across platforms. For example, the text you format in Microsoft Word for Windows 95 will look the same if you open the same document in Word for the Macintosh®.
·      Each TrueType typeface requires only a .TTF file to create fonts in all point sizes at all resolutions for all output devices. (Raster fonts need separate files for each point size, resolution, and display device.)
·      TrueType fonts are integrated with the operating environment, so all applications created for Windows 95 can use TrueType fonts in the same ways as they do other Windows 95 raster fonts without changes or upgrades.
In many applications, TrueType fonts appear in the Fonts dialog box with a “TT” logo beside the typeface name. Typefaces that are device fonts have a printer icon beside their names in the list.
TrueType fonts are stored as a collection of points and “hints” that define the character outlines. When an application created for Windows 95 requests a font, TrueType uses the outline and the hints to render a bitmap in the size requested. Hints are the algorithms that distort the scaled font outlines to improve how the bitmaps appear at specific resolutions.
After system startup, the first time you select a TrueType font size, TrueType renders a bitmap of the selected characters for display or printing. Because of this, the initial font generation may be slower than with Windows 95 raster fonts. However, Windows 95 stores the rendered bitmaps in a font cache, so each subsequent time the font is used during that Windows 95 session, display or printing will be just as fast as for a Windows 95 raster font.

I think what is important note here is that windows renders a TT font as a bitmap font while in a Dos window. In addition, any font that you want to use, if available in either Bitmap or TT, must either be in the registry or in the Win.ini to have this work correctly. With this as a given you need to acquire a Bitmap or TT font that closely aproximates the size and density that you need and then specify that font either by registering the font in the registry or in the Win.ini file. The following article, although it speaks of Adobes Post Script Fonts, it's focus is on registering the fonts.

PSS ID Number: Q121245
Article last modified on 08-30-1996
PSS database name: WIN95X 95
The information in this article applies to:
 - Microsoft Windows 95
When you double-click the Fonts icon in Control Panel, Adobe Type Manager (ATM) PostScript Type 1 fonts are not displayed.
Windows 95 displays only fonts that are listed in the registry or in the [FONTS] section of the WIN.INI file. When ATM is installed, the fonts are not added to this file. If you manually add the fonts to the WIN.INI file, they are displayed, but they cannot be opened (or viewed).
To view the installed ATM fonts, run the ATM Control Panel application (ATMCNTRL.EXE) included with Adobe Type Manager.

I will get the address of the font downloads at the Microsoft site and post them separately.


The Microsoft Knowledge Base list several font converter programs that are also available for use in windows that will convert any font to nearly anything you want. Please see articles Q87817, Q130459, Q69081, Q131943 and Q167599, as I think they all have relevance here.

McCranie: Microsoft had made available eight software font packages that could be downloaded, however they have since been moved to their MSDN site.

here are some addresses for you.




Best regards,


Please don't insult our expertise in saying if we are unaware of ATM, and by the way we use version 4.0 not 3.0 since it's oudated.

ATM 4.0 has accomodated MULITPLE library set amongst them is the TTF font files format.  That does not mean that adobe does a TTF fonts, all what ATM does now is allow you to SEE these TTF fonts and install them on the fly using ATM.

These facilities has been added because of many designers request to exclude using another FONT installer like Fontminder from ARES coporation.

That's what I wanted to clarify.

And by the way, your earlier post was addressing TTF FONTS from ADOBE not ATM.
And for the record, my post is comming from adobe site which I believe has a relation with Adobe Type Manager???

Good Mag, I'm glad you did some of your homework, not all, but some. ATM stands for *Adobe Type Manager* and is a product of Adobe Systems. Version 3.0, unlike 4.0, has a dos compatible font generator, where 4.0 dos not. (see MSKB). As for the remainder of the quip, TTF stands for "True Type Font" . Now, is there some reason why you should feel insulted?


When you say if you are aware of ATM, a question like this should not be asked.  It's like asking you "Are you aware of something called Motherboard???" you know what I mean.

Now MSKB can say whatever they want, but anything less than ADOBE type 1 Font (postcript) is CRAP, excuse the term but this is the pure reality.  Now if you say that Adobe ATM has a DOS generator, I will not debate this before making sure but since we do not use any DOS base program to make design as you might know that, we never bothered even to check.

Mag: We use 3.0 because occassionally we need to use Dos to create Dos splash screens where letter pitch and dimension are important. Since we use Dos for cross platform work, we can't get around it.

McCranie: Here's that font Q&A site with the fonts and downloads listed. I don't know how long MS will keep it there!


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