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I used to work with Fontlab Studio to design and compile my fonts. Years have passed and my former Fontlab install vanished into the voids of a crashing harddisk.

Now that I'm gaining interest in font-design again, I used and abused the usual search engines, but I have not managed to find any free or open-source software out there with alike functionality which Fontlab offers.

Therefore I would love to know: "Is there any open-source alternative to Fontlab out there?"

(Preferably, it should be able to run on a Microsoft Windows operating system.)

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2 Answers

up vote 9 down vote accepted

Open Source Font Editors:

  1. FontForge
  2. gbdfed Bitmap Font Editor
  3. BirdFont

Freeware Font Editors:

  1. Font Struct
  2. Bit font Maker
  3. Type light
  4. Font Constructor
  5. Raster Font Editor

Commercial Font Editors:

  1. FontCreator

Font Management:

  1. 25 Font Management Tools Reviewed

Search results for font management:

  1. What is a good free font management tool for linux?
  2. Font management tools for Mac
  3. Font management tool across multiple machines

Misc.:

  1. The upcoming .91 release of Inkscape claims to have 'type design feeatures'
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Fontlab Studio is a font editor, so only fontforge satisfies my needs. But that doesn't mean I don't appreciate your efforts. As a matter a fact, fontforge might just be what I was looking for. Thanks! EDIT seems "Font Creator" should be listed as "Font Editor" too. ;) –  e-sushi Jul 23 '13 at 17:01
    
Added Birdfont. Haven't used it, but looks interesting. –  DA01 Jul 23 '13 at 22:43
    
Fontforge is the big hitter. It comes with a steep learning curve, but that just goes with the territory -- no one ever accused FontLab of being intuitive ;) –  plainclothes Jul 23 '13 at 23:15
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Fontforge

It can be a bit clunky on Windows and crash occasionally, but then it can do that sometimes on Linux, too. Keep backups. I edit all fonts directly in my Dropbox directory so I have access to a file history.

Its user interface is strange and the author has no intention to fix that any time soon.

Some parts of it, like the auto-hinting, are actually very good and I would argue are better than Fontlab. Other parts of it are inferior. I don't, for example, think the simplify algorithm is very good, particularly for quadratic splines (which is what you use for Truetype outlines).

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