I'm using an Arch-based Linux distro.

Recently I started a New Ricing for my BSPWM. This time I want to use a bitmap font.

Well I would like a font with glyphs, so I chose Siji.

Previously I used some other bitmap fonts like Cozette, Scientifica, Tamsyn. And found that .otb-format bitmap fonts work fine and as expected. But .bdf (aka the only format Siji is available in) doesn't work. Even if I remove the 70-no-bitmap file (removing that file made .otb fonts work but didn't do anything to .bdf).

Is there any other thing that I need to do to make it work?

I would like to know what could be the problem. What makes .bdf not work but makes .otb work? Is there a way to list all the glyphs in a grid so that I could copy the icons instead of the unicode (eg: \uE297)?

Also I need this so that I could configure Polybar and finish my rice (for any one who doesn't know ricing : its just a term for customizing and making it better and it's used for Linux/Unix customization).

Also is there a way to enter the Unicode (eg: "E0344") in Polybar configuration to display the icon (from one of the font that I have installed and declared in the config) instead of the Unicode text? When I use the Unicode reference (that i copied from material design icons website in Google fonts) and I paste it with \u, it doesn't work and displays \uE322 instead of the icon.

1 Answer 1


There seem to be multiple questions here and unfortunately I don't know the answer to all of them.

Why the .bdf font doesn't work, I don't know. For me, the siji-git package in the AUR works fine and it installs the bdf variant.

There is indeed a way to list all available glyphs in a grid: The GNOME Character Map (or gucharmap). Be sure to select View > Show only glyphs from this font. However, if siji does not show up in fc-list, it won't show up in gucharmap either.

And finally, polybar does not have a way to specify the hex code for a unicode code point at the time of writing. You have to copy-paste the glyphs directly.

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