Fonts Demystified in Oracle Application 11i

“Your technical team is reporting that the report they developed in one font, when generated from oracle Applications automatically converts to another font.”

The most common architecture which is deployed at customer place is the Oracle Applications server runs on UNIX flavours whereas client machine operates with Windows flavour. Generally developer uses windows machine installed with various software to develop custom reports and forms.

So reports developed on windows platform is deployed and run in UNIX platform. Here comes the catch. Windows uses True Type fonts to operate. Those fonts may or may not be available in UNIX. Hence, Oracle Applications uses font aliasing procedures to map the font used in reports to its nearest cousin in UNIX.  For instance, the report developed in ‘Arial’ will be mapped to ‘Helvetica’ on UNIX server by Oracle Applications. Again the report in ‘MS Sans Serif’ will also be mapped to ‘Helvetica’ in UNIX server. This aliasing is done using uifont.ali file. The file resides in path $ORACLE_HOME/guicommon6/tk60/admin/.  You can see the ‘Global’ section of uifont.ali to see the mappings in your server.

If you wish to use the exact True Type fonts in Oracle Applications, then you need to configure IX Library.  IX Library removes the dependency of Oracle Applications on UNIX for fonts while generation reports. IX Library also enables you to install your own custom fonts. Please note that when ever you configure IX Library then all settings made in uifont.ali is overridden.

Configuring IX Library in Oracle Applications I‘ll take up in coming posts.


  • 34534.1  —  Font Aliasing and Oracle Reports – FAQ738258.1  — Why Is The Font Different On The Same Bitmap Oracle Report on Two Separate Instances
  • 255706.1  — Courier New font is automatically aliased to Courier for PDF output on Windows

About the Author Atul Kumar

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