CUPS-PDF text export problem

Hello,
I am trying Bricscad Version 14.1.17 revision 33197 on Fedora 20,32bit install. I have problem with printing to PDF using CUPS-PDF virtual printer. When I create PDF with this virtual printer, text is exported as graphics, even when I have 'TrueType text ' setting in my printer settings. The readibility of such texy is worse, then when it's exported as text.
I attach two files for comparison:

1) 01_text-test-CUPS-pdf.pdf:
file created with CUPS-PDF - the text is exported as graphics and you cannot highlight it in pdf viewer

2) 02_text-test-PDF-export.pdf:
file created with internal PDF exporter - File > Export.... option. Text is clearer and highlightable in pdf viewer

The used fonts are Arial, Ubuntu and non TrueType font simplex.shx. I also attach sample test .dwg file.
When I print with CUPS-PDF from another CAD program, DraftSight, text is not exported as text (I cannot highlight it in pdf viewer), but the text is very clear. So this seems like a Bricscad probelm to me.
Can someone confirm this issue? Is it just my system or Bricscad problem?

Comments

  • One more thing:
    I found 'Text quality' under 'Plot and Publish' settings. Tried plotting with values 0, 50 and 100 without much difference in the plottted result.
  • No, it's not a problem with your particular install.
    TTFASTEXT does indeed not work, and the export option also has some flaws. I filed a SR (41434) already a while ago (still on V13), and some progress has been made since, but recently, there does not seem to be a lot of activity in this area...
  • Hi Knut,
    thanks for fast reply. Is there a way to follow SR for me as a non-Bricsys insider? I would like to follow it, so that I will know, when the issue is resolved.

    Tom

  • Unfortunately, no.
    Bricsys does not want to open their bugtracker to registered users (I already suggested that), so the only way to communicate is to post here.
    I guess that it would be quite a relief for the support team, if issues would not be reported multiple times, but they will have their reasons...
  • Are you using TTF or SHX fonts in your drawings?
    I am using SHX (isocp) and had this issue earlier (on v12 and possibly v13) with BricsCAD and Cups PDF (sharp corners on text met in a too long sharp edge, getting worse with thicker text lines). But with v14 text print well. Difficult to say if it was resolved by development of the printing system in BricsCAD, by upgrades to cups-pdf and its dependencies, or by the fact that Bricsys added a well formed isocp.shx file among the BricsCAD standard fonts.

    Regardless; During the time when I had trouble, the built-in PDF export function in BricsCAD always produced well formed text.
    First setup print settings in the layout for cups-pdf printer. (Make sure to uncheck the 'Scale Lineweights' check-box since the built in pdf exporter will not produce correct linework with this setting).
    Then instead of printing, use 'File/Export/Adobe PDF' (and make sure you manually change the extension to .pdf). The exporter will use the print settings you have defined for the layout.

    (My PDF-export options are attached if you want to verify yours)

    I hope it was to some help
    /Mikael
    imagescreenshot.png
  • Unfortunately, no.
    Bricsys does not want to open their bugtracker to registered users (I already suggested that), so the only way to communicate is to post here.
    I guess that it would be quite a relief for the support team, if issues would not be reported multiple times, but they will have their reasons...


    Thanks Knut. I can understad, why developer's don't want the public to see under their hands. I'll at least take a note of that SR number I take a careful look at future releases.
  • Are you using TTF or SHX fonts in your drawings?
    I am using SHX (isocp) and had this issue earlier (on v12 and possibly v13) with BricsCAD and Cups PDF (sharp corners on text met in a too long sharp edge, getting worse with thicker text lines). But with v14 text print well. Difficult to say if it was resolved by development of the printing system in BricsCAD, by upgrades to cups-pdf and its dependencies, or by the fact that Bricsys added a well formed isocp.shx file among the BricsCAD standard fonts.

    Regardless; During the time when I had trouble, the built-in PDF export function in BricsCAD always produced well formed text.
    First setup print settings in the layout for cups-pdf printer. (Make sure to uncheck the 'Scale Lineweights' check-box since the built in pdf exporter will not produce correct linework with this setting).
    Then instead of printing, use 'File/Export/Adobe PDF' (and make sure you manually change the extension to .pdf). The exporter will use the print settings you have defined for the layout.

    (My PDF-export options are attached if you want to verify yours)

    I hope it was to some help
    /Mikael


    Hi Mikael,
    thanks for your suggestions. I tried with three types of fonts, two are ttf fonts - Arial, Ubuntu and one is shx font - simplex.shx . Even the .shx font looks worse than when using native PDF export. You can see my uploaded comparison files in the first post.
    I will try to take a look at the isocp.shx font, I dont't have Bricscad installed on a machine I am typing from.

    I know abou the native File > Export...  PDF option. This exports to PDF the text fine. But the problem is, that you cannot publish with this option - you can either export only one layout, or all of them. That's limiting me. Publish is powerful tool and I loose it, if I use Export... . Or am I missing something? In Autocad, there's vitrual printer DWGtoPDF (that's autocad's native PDF export), with which you can work as with normal printer, but I don't see any such option in Bricscad.
  • Hello,
    I am trying Bricscad Version 14.1.17 revision 33197 on Fedora 20,32bit install. I have problem with printing to PDF using CUPS-PDF virtual printer. When I create PDF with this virtual printer, text is exported as graphics, even when I have 'TrueType text ' setting in my printer settings. The readibility of such texy is worse, then when it's exported as text.
    I attach two files for comparison:

    1) 01_text-test-CUPS-pdf.pdf:
    file created with CUPS-PDF - the text is exported as graphics and you cannot highlight it in pdf viewer

    2) 02_text-test-PDF-export.pdf:
    file created with internal PDF exporter - File > Export.... option. Text is clearer and highlightable in pdf viewer

    The used fonts are Arial, Ubuntu and non TrueType font simplex.shx. I also attach sample test .dwg file.
    When I print with CUPS-PDF from another CAD program, DraftSight, text is not exported as text (I cannot highlight it in pdf viewer), but the text is very clear. So this seems like a Bricscad probelm to me.
    Can someone confirm this issue? Is it just my system or Bricscad problem?

    Ah, text output from BricsCAD, a subject dear to my heart!

    I confirm first that when printing to CUPS-PDF from BricsCAD, the TTF font characters will always be converted to geometry. That parts okay, my AutoCAD LT does that also when printing to PDFCreator. And your DraftSight also converts TTF text to geometry. It is not a bad strategy for a CAD application.

    I also confirm that BricsCAD printing TTF to CUPS-PDF does not look quite as clear as the same output from other applications (AutoCAD, DraftSight). I think I know what is causing this and I have a support request in to BricsCAD.

    If you use "Export to PDF", the text will be very clear because the fonts and text are embedded. However, in every test I have done, the resulting text is different in size and spacing than what I wanted. That problem is also visible in the sample files you attached.

    Also, try a different PDF viewer. Your CUPS-PDF sample file did not look so bad using mupdf.
  • One more thing:
    I found 'Text quality' under 'Plot and Publish' settings. Tried plotting with values 0, 50 and 100 without much difference in the plottted result.
    Hi Tom,
    In order for "Text quality" to take effect, you have to change the setting, save the drawing, close BricsCAD, re-open BricsCAD, re-open the drawing. After you have done that, you will see the effect of the new "Text quality".
    See this post for more info:
  • Are you using TTF or SHX fonts in your drawings?
    I am using SHX (isocp) and had this issue earlier (on v12 and possibly v13) with BricsCAD and Cups PDF (sharp corners on text met in a too long sharp edge, getting worse with thicker text lines). But with v14 text print well. Difficult to say if it was resolved by development of the printing system in BricsCAD, by upgrades to cups-pdf and its dependencies, or by the fact that Bricsys added a well formed isocp.shx file among the BricsCAD standard fonts.

    Regardless; During the time when I had trouble, the built-in PDF export function in BricsCAD always produced well formed text.
    First setup print settings in the layout for cups-pdf printer. (Make sure to uncheck the 'Scale Lineweights' check-box since the built in pdf exporter will not produce correct linework with this setting).
    Then instead of printing, use 'File/Export/Adobe PDF' (and make sure you manually change the extension to .pdf). The exporter will use the print settings you have defined for the layout.

    (My PDF-export options are attached if you want to verify yours)

    I hope it was to some help
    /Mikael
    Hi Mikael,
    The problem with long points on text angles when using SHX fonts is due to the line join style of the pen that is being used to draw the SHX text. SHX fonts are just regular line segments, so they behave like regulare CAD lines. These lines can have different join styles such as round and mitre. It is often recommended to use the "round" line join style for the virtual pen that will be used to write SHX text. This is configured in the Page Setup > Plot Style Table (CTB file).
    I'm glad your problem cleared up by itself with V14!
    The problem with the built-in PDF export for me is that text comes out different size and different spacing than what is expected. Yes, it looks smooth enough, but text placement is unpredictable.
  • Hi Mikael,
    thanks for your suggestions. I tried with three types of fonts, two are ttf fonts - Arial, Ubuntu and one is shx font - simplex.shx . Even the .shx font looks worse than when using native PDF export. You can see my uploaded comparison files in the first post.
    I will try to take a look at the isocp.shx font, I dont't have Bricscad installed on a machine I am typing from.

    I know abou the native File > Export...  PDF option. This exports to PDF the text fine. But the problem is, that you cannot publish with this option - you can either export only one layout, or all of them. That's limiting me. Publish is powerful tool and I loose it, if I use Export... . Or am I missing something? In Autocad, there's vitrual printer DWGtoPDF (that's autocad's native PDF export), with which you can work as with normal printer, but I don't see any such option in Bricscad.
    Hi Tom,
    In my experience, SHX fonts will not be affected by the choice of CUPS-PDF or Export To PDF. SHX are made up of simple line elements, and in my experience, lines and line weights are handled equally by the two PDF options.
    The bad thing about SHX fonts is that you have to print them with just the right line weight, and different sizes of text may require different line weights.
  • The problem with the built-in PDF export for me is that text comes out different size and different spacing than what is expected. Yes, it looks smooth enough, but text placement is unpredictable.


    Yes, your right, this is one of the flaws that I mentioned earlier.

    My SR contained the following points:

    - export to pdf outputs curves as polygons, and hatches as many filled triangles
    - print to pdf (CUPS) outputs curves as export does, while hatches are output as filled polygons (better)
    - export outputs color 255 as light gray, while print outputs it as white (as set in the plot style)
    - exporting with font embedding just works for some ttf fonts, while other ttf fonts are output out of scale, and otf or pfb fonts are completely omitted.
    - TTFASTEXT has no effect on printing to pdf

    In 14.02 (beta), there was some progress:
    - circles, arcs and splines are exported as curves (but splines result in several curve segments)
    - hatches are exported as filled polygons
    - otf fonts are exported, but do not properly display, neither in Acrobat (nothing at all), nor in mupdf or evince (garbled, special characters). Surprisingly, these texts display perfectly when I open the pdf in inkscape...
    - the publish command now has the option to export the sheets, but I could not get it to work (crashed or produced empty pdf files).

    I did not get feedback on the current state of things, I can just hope that the final 14.02 will resolve the remaining issues with export/publish.
    Printing to pdf would then be obsolete (on second thought: no, it would still serve well if you deliberately want to create low-quality output...).


  • Ah, text output from BricsCAD, a subject dear to my heart!

    Sounds like you have spent some time with this subject :).


    I confirm first that when printing to CUPS-PDF from BricsCAD, the TTF font characters will always be converted to geometry. That parts okay, my AutoCAD LT does that also when printing to PDFCreator. And your DraftSight also converts TTF text to geometry. It is not a bad strategy for a CAD application.

    Yes, I don't care if the text is exported as text or geometry as long as it's exported in good quality.


    If you use "Export to PDF", the text will be very clear because the fonts and text are embedded. However, in every test I have done, the resulting text is different in size and spacing than what I wanted. That problem is also visible in the sample files you attached.

    I also recognized different spacing of text. This could present a problem in some areas.

    Also, try a different PDF viewer. Your CUPS-PDF sample file did not look so bad using mupdf.

    I tried Evince, Adobe Reader and Firefox's builtin PDF viewer, all with the same result. I also don't care much how it looks on my computer, the important output is client's computer and print output. So changing pdf viewer is not a solution.


  • Hmm, that post didn't turn out as I wanted to, my text was inserted into your quote. So here is what i wrote:

    [code]I confirm first that when printing to CUPS-PDF from BricsCAD, the TTF font characters will always be converted to geometry. That parts okay, my AutoCAD LT does that also when printing to PDFCreator. And your DraftSight also converts TTF text to geometry. It is not a bad strategy for a CAD application. [/code]

    Yes, I don't care if the text is exported as text or geometry as long as it's exported in good quality.


    [code]If you use "Export to PDF", the text will be very clear because the fonts and text are embedded. However, in every test I have done, the resulting text is different in size and spacing than what I wanted. That problem is also visible in the sample files you attached. [/code]

    I also recognized different spacing of text. This could present a problem in some areas.

  • Hi Tom,
    In order for "Text quality" to take effect, you have to change the setting, save the drawing, close BricsCAD, re-open BricsCAD, re-open the drawing. After you have done that, you will see the effect of the new "Text quality".
    See this post for more info:


    Thanks for the information. I tried saving the file and opening it again. The text in CUPS-PDF print looks better, but still not as good as 'Export as PDF'.

    I also realized that shx fonts are not exported as text with 'Export as PDF'.


  • - the publish command now has the option to export the sheets, but I could not get it to work (crashed or produced empty pdf files).

    I did not get feedback on the current state of things, I can just hope that the final 14.02 will resolve the remaining issues with export/publish.
    Printing to pdf would then be obsolete (on second thought: no, it would still serve well if you deliberately want to create low-quality output...).



    Thanks for mentioning what has already been reported as bug.

    Does this last part mean, that you could use 'Export as PDF' as a virtual printer and use it with conjunction with 'Publish' command in 14.2?

    Currenty I am having problem with 'Export as PDF' - when I export all sheets, even the current view of model space is exported. Is there an option to not export model space?

    Thanks to all of you for these quick and comprehensive answers.
  • Another fun fact with PDFs. Even the color is different when using 'Export to PDF' and CUPS-PDF. Bright colors seem the same, but dark colors are different. It doesn't metter if it's text or not. See attached files - especially the green n.119 is completely different. When I print from Draftsight, colors are the same as when using 'Export to PDF' in Bricscad. This is not a big deal to me though.

    CUPS_pdf_color.pdfPDF_export_color.pdf

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