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When I open xpdf, I'm seeing a bunch of errors printed to my console:

Config Error: No display font for 'Courier'
Config Error: No display font for 'Courier-Bold'
Config Error: No display font for 'Courier-BoldOblique'
Config Error: No display font for 'Courier-Oblique'
Config Error: No display font for 'Helvetica'
Config Error: No display font for 'Helvetica-Bold'
Config Error: No display font for 'Helvetica-BoldOblique'
Config Error: No display font for 'Helvetica-Oblique'
Config Error: No display font for 'Symbol'
Config Error: No display font for 'Times-Bold'
Config Error: No display font for 'Times-BoldItalic'
Config Error: No display font for 'Times-Italic'
Config Error: No display font for 'Times-Roman'
Config Error: No display font for 'ZapfDingbats'

The strange thing is: This only started happening after I created the config file ~/.xpdfrc (even if it is empty). Am I missing something? Is there a way to suppress/fix the errors?

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    I can't reproduce this. What fonts does your document use? (PDF can use fonts embedded in the document or external fonts, if the fonts aren't installed this could be the cause). What do other PDF readers tell you? Take a peek at the manual page for xpdfrc and any default configuration shipped for your system, here (Fedora 34) at /etc/xpdfrc (all comments, by the way).
    – vonbrand
    Sep 18, 2021 at 1:42
  • Thanks for the reply @vonbrand - This pointed me in the right direction (see answer below). Sep 28, 2021 at 12:25

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It turned out on Arch Linux specifically (not sure about other distributions), the file /etc/xpdfrc is not all comments. Possibly the Ghostscript fonts are not installed in the "default" location (as explained in /etc/xpdfrc), which is why the font mappings (fontFile) are required.

The solution for me was to:

cp /etc/xpdfrc ~/.xpdfrc

And then add custom options to the end of ~/.xpdfrc instead of creating a new config file in my home directory.

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