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What to do after the end of Adobe Type 1 font support

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As of January 2023, Adobe has ended its support for Type 1/Postscript fonts. Type 1 has been replaced in favor of the much more versatile OTF.

You may have seen that little warning within your Adobe software that warns you that Type 1 fonts will no longer be supported in 2023.

Type 1 fonts were developed by Adobe for PostScript printing. It was the only recognized standard font file format at the time. It was favored for being small in file size and portable as it was available on every operating system. It is considered a higher resolution making it the choice for high quality printing.

Open Type Fonts (OTF) can be thought of as the successor to Type 1 fonts and there are two main benefits:

  1. Cross-platform compatibility.
  2. High capacity to store up to 65,000 characters, including letters, special characters, glyphs and other features in a single font file.

The second makes it the better option for designers and gives them the most flexibility. Open Type Fonts are also built upon its predecessor TTF which was created as the everyday font file used for both print and web, thus making OTF compatible with the web and can take advantage of features such as ligatures and small caps.

As posted by Adobe, after support has ended:

  1. Type 1 fonts will not appear in the Fonts menu.
  2. There would be no way to use previously installed Type 1 fonts
  3. Existing Type 1 fonts will appear as “Missing fonts” in the document
  4. Trying to edit PDF or EPS files for editing in applications such as Illustrator or Photoshop will trigger a “Missing fonts” error. However, those file types will be unaffected if you are using those file formats for display or printing as graphic elements.

SO, WHAT NOW?

Late in November of 2022, Kathy Portie, senior editor of Big Bear Grizzly, reached out to Presteligence with concerns of Adobe software warnings about Type 1 font support being discontinued in 2023 and what steps that she could take to remedy the problem.

Presteligence was quick to respond with options to help Big Bear Grizzly, and hopefully this information can help others if they find themselves in the same scenario.

PRESERVE YOUR WORKFLOW

Before doing any type of updating, you should first preserve your current method of workflow if possible. If you have not yet updated your Adobe software, you can continue to use your current version as older versions will still allow for Type 1 fonts.

Ensure that your Adobe account is not set to update your software automatically. See below.

  1. Click on your profile icon from the Creative Cloud App.
  2. Click on Preferences.
  3. Click on Apps tab and untick “Auto-update” if it is turned on.

This will enable you to continue working as you have but be aware that not only will Adobe software discontinue Type 1 fonts, but computer operating systems will eventually discontinue support for Type 1 fonts as well. So, it is best to use this as a temporary solution while you plan for replacing Type 1 fonts with Open Type Fonts.

UPDATE IF YOU ARE READY

If your Adobe software has already been updated or you are ready to update, there are a few options to start using Open Type Fonts.

  1. Check with your IT department as they may already have a plan or solution in place to move forward to Open Type Fonts.
  2. You can purchase the license for the OTF versions of your Type 1 fonts. If you have an Adobe subscription, Adobe allows users to purchase OTF versions of the Type 1 fonts through Fontspring.
  3. Look to see if the Open Type version of your Type 1 font (or similar alternative) is already available to you via Creative Cloud's free font list:

    1. Click “Manage Fonts” from the Creative Cloud left menu panel.

    2. Find the font in your current list to activate if it is already available.

    3. If the font is not already in your “Active Fonts” list, click “Browse More Fonts” in the top right corner to explore further.

KEEP MOVING FOWARD

It truly is the end of an era as most print shops and publishers used Type 1/Postscript fonts for all their print work and publications. Still, moving to Open Type Fonts for standard use will give publishers and their designers the flexibility to use the same fonts across different platforms, expanded glyph capacity and typesetting, extensive language support and futureproofing for open industry standards. With a little planning and the suggestions listed above, integrating Open Type Fonts into your workflow should make for a smooth transition.

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