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I have seen lines like the one below, in a number of config files (xmobar has one of these and dmenu too has this)

'-*-fixed-*-*-*-*-18-*-*-*-*-*-*-*'
  1. What is the meaning of each token which is separated by a hyphen (-)?
  2. Where can I see a list of fonts which I can use in these configs?

There is another variation of this with obvious placeholders. Where can I see a list of fonts for this? (I understand that xft fonts are different)

xft:Bitstream Vera Sans Mono:size=10:antialias=true

2 Answers 2

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xfontsel will allow you to view, select and adjust all of these fields:

xfontsel in action...

You can also use the command xlsfonts to see a list of installed fonts. This will list all fonts, so you may want to pipe it through grep to view required subsets, eg,: xlsfonts | grep droid

Similarly, fc-list will display a list of all installed fonts.

You can read more about the differences between core and Xft fonts here: http://en.wikibooks.org/wiki/Guide_to_X11/Fonts#Core_versus_Xft_fonts

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The former is a X logical font descriptor; the linked article describes each field. The xfontsel tool can help you create a XLFD interactively.

The latter is a Xft font name. While there are API calls for enumerating the various fonts, I don't know of any tool that exposes it since most have changed over to Fontconfig already.

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