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On a CentOS 7 installation I have a number of font files in /usr/share/fonts. Some of them have been correctly recognised by fontconfig and show up in fc-list, but others quite simply refuse to be added to the cache.

I set the flags CACHEV and SCANV (seperately) for FC_DEBUG and ran fc-cache -fv. Fonts that work correctly show up in the output when either of those flags are set, but fonts which aren't working show up only with SCANV. However, I can't make out a difference between the SCANV output for working vs broken fonts which might explain the issue.

The fonts in question have also already been correctly installed on another CentOS installation (which is not quite identical to this one but similar enough) and work just fine there. I ran cmp and diff over the "broken" files in /usr/share/fonts and a copy of the working ones from the other system and they claim to be identical.

Permissions are consistently set to -rw-r--r-- and files are owned by the current user.

What could be the cause of this behaviour? How can I go about debugging this further?

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I could get the fonts in question to show up in fc-list by running fc-cache -rv. Apparently the switch -f doesn't force regeneration from scratch whereas -r deletes existing caches and starts over.

The critical hint was found here: Why is font not listed by fc-list after running fc-cache on font

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