Caution: This version of this document is no longer maintained. For the latest documentation, see


Convert BDF fonts to Photon fonts


bdftophf2 [-A offset] [-E end_character]
          [-N num_chars] [-O output_file]
          [-o output_path] [-S start_character]

Runs on:



-A offset
Offset character encodings.
-E end_character
Set ending character code.
-N num_chars
The maximum number of characters to convert.
-O output_file
Write the converted file to output_file. Overrides the -o option.
-o output_path
Write the converted file to output_path.
-S start_character
Set starting character code.
Name of the BDF file to convert.


The bdftophf2 utility converts Binary Data Format (BDF) font files into Photon font files. BDF is a universal standard for ASCII bitmap font representation.


Convert all the BDF Courier font files in the /font/bdf directory to Photon font files in the /home/fred/font directory:

bdftophf2 -o /home/fred/font /font/bdf/cour*.bdf

Note: The Extension installation is necessary only if you want this font to be searched for characters not found (such as Asian/Latin fonts) in other font files.


This utility works only with Unicode BDF files.

The glyphs within the .bdf file must be sorted in ascending order. For example, 0x0000, 0x0020,0x2e5f, 0xfffe is an example of a set of glyphs listed in ascending order.