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TechNote #7: Last modified: 10/20/99
Last reviewed: 10/20/99

Font ID Conflict Between Two Macs and MathType 1.x-2.x

The information in this document applies to:

MathType 3.0 (Mac)
MathType 2.0 (Mac)
MathType 1.0 (Mac)

Macintosh OS 6

The Problem

When an attempt is made to print a document containing MathType equations from one Macintosh (Mac #2) that has itself been created on a different Macintosh (Mac #1), a message stating that MathType's Belmont font is missing, may be encountered. This happens because the "Belmo" file cannot be found by the LaserWriter printer driver.

This situation occurs because the (the Belmont font) identification number used by the Macintosh System Software is different on the two machines. The Macintosh system software identifies every font by assigning a font number that is not currently assigned to any other font. Since the font is searched for by it's number on the first machine, rather than its name before it is printed, it won't be found on the second machine, and hence the message.

Newer software applications kept track of fonts in documents by their name instead of by number. This means that when a document is opened by a word processor, the Macintosh system software is queried to find out the number assigned to each font in the document. The font numbers are used internally while the document is open, but when the document is stored on disk, the font's name is used instead. Almost all modern Macintosh applications use this technique.

Although applications save fonts by name, clipboard graphics still refer to fonts by number. This means that a word processing document containing graphics pasted in from the clipboard (e.g. equations) are subject to font numbering conflicts.

The Solution

There are four different solutions to this problem. The best solution will depend on the complexity of the document and how often this situation is encountered.

  1. From the MathType master disk use the download utility in the fonts folder to "permanently" send the "Belmo" file to the LaserWriter before printing. This downloads the Belmont font to the printer where it will stay until the printer is turned off or reset.

The next three solutions apply only if MathType is installed on Mac #2:

  1. The ultimate solution to avoid font numbering conflicts in the future, if you use System 6.0.5 or later, you can install 32-bit Quickdraw so graphics refer to fonts by name. This is actually optional in the installation procedure, but to get font naming in clipboard graphics, you must choose this option. With System 7, this happens automatically. This solution may be impractical if you do not have access to System 6.0.5 or System 7 or you do not have enough memory for 32-bit Quickdraw.
  2. Copy all the MathType equations from the document into MathType on Mac #2, and then Paste them back into the document. Do this one equation at a time. This changes the ID number so the document may be printed from Mac #2, but this copy will not print from Mac #1.
  3. Making sure that the Belmont font ID number is the same on both machines is the best long term solution. Under the Finder (NOT MultiFinder), use the Font/DA Mover (see the Mac manual for details) for the following four steps:
  1. Create a single Font/DA Mover suitcase file on a diskette that contains every font that you wish to use between your two Macs. This will become the master font file as each font will be forced to have a unique number within this file. If you use a huge number of fonts and this will not fit on a single diskette, just copy one small point size for each font into this master file.
  2. Remove all the fonts from the System files of both the Macs. Of course, make sure you have backup copies of all your fonts. Some fonts are in the Mac's read-only memory and cannot be removed; don't worry about these.
  3. Reinstall all the fonts from the master font file created in step 1.
  4. If you copied only the smallest point sizes into the master font file, you can now install the other sizes from any source without fear of changing the font numbering.

Note: This procedure insures that the Belmont font has the same ID number on both machines and that it will not have been interfered with during the transfer by any other font number in the system. Any document now created on either Mac should print from the other. However, this now means that any previous document created on Mac #2 will have the old ID number, and will have to be printed using methods #1 or #3 above.

Any new fonts you purchase should be added to the master font file and then installed onto your Mac from the master. The master font disk can be used on other Macs as needed.

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