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  1. #1
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    If all of the following conditions are met in a document created in Word 2007:

    1. the Cambria font is used;

    2. "Kerning for fonts" is checked (Fonts > Character Spacing tab); and

    3. the document is subsequently opened in a version of Word prior to Word 2007 (e.g., Word 2003 or earlier)

    then painfully obvious letterspacing errors will be apparent both on screen and in printed output. In particular, the "de" and "le" pairs will be far too close. See the attached PDF for a short example.

    The document will display and print nicely in Word 2007; only when an attempt is made to open it in an earlier version does the corruption occur.

    UNChecking "Kerning for fonts" solves the problem, but the cost is no kerning.

    Cambria is one of the new ClearType "C" fonts introduced with Office 2007. The others are Calibri, Corbel, Candara, Constantia, and Consolas. Only Cambria seems to have this problem!

    Does anyone have an explanation for this? Is Microsoft aware of the problem (not so far as I can determine) and has a fix been promised or delivered (same)?

    Or is this a local problem due to some odd configuration issue that no one has ever seen in the wild?

    [attachment=88463:Cambria_Bad_Kern_Example.pdf]

    Many thanks!
    Attached Files Attached Files

  2. #2
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    This was a reported bug when W2K7 was released as RTF. I though it had been fixed by a service pack. Have you installed all the patches and updates?

    Terry

  3. #3
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    Thanks Terry. Yes, Word 2007 is at SP2 which I believe is the latest, and we are up-to-date with Win XP patches too.

    It does not appear that there have been any changes to the Cambria font file, which is at version 1.02, file date 26 Sep 2006.

  4. #4
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    Actually, now I've looked at that more carefully, I'm not so sure about it. Can you upload it as a docx please?

    Terry

  5. #5
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    Here are .docx copies of two files which were created on Word 2007 SP2.

    [attachment=88488:Cambria_Kern_Example_A.docx]
    [attachment=88489:Cambria_Kern_Example_B.docx]

    They display and print fine in Word 2007, as demonstrated by this PDF scan of a print from Word 2007:

    [attachment=88490:Cambria_Kern_Example_B_WORD_2007. pdf]

    But when printed from Word XP, they are obviously bad, as demonstrated by this PDF scan of a print from Word XP:

    [attachment=88491:Cambria_Kern_Example_B_WORD_XP.pd f]


    The Word 2007 examples come from a workstation running Windows XP SP3. The Word XP examples come from Windows Server 2003.

    When I right-click on the Windows XP font file (cambria.ttc) the Properties > Version tab shows 1.02. This is the same version that installs with the Compatibility Pack, the PowerPoint 2007 Viewer, etc.

    It seems really odd that an error like this would not have been fixed by now, but yet here it is.
    Attached Files Attached Files

  6. #6
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    I believe that there have been two updates to the compatibility p[ack that were not released by Windows Update. I suggest that you try downloading the latest Compatibility Pack, uninstall the old pack and install the latest pack (6 Jan 2010). Does that resolve the problem?

    Terry

  7. #7
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    I removed the Compatibility Pack using Add/Remove Programs, and installed a fresh download of version 4, 6 Jan 2010.

    After this refresh, the cambria.ttc file is still at version 1.02, 2006.

    The kerning problem persists.

  8. #8
    4 Star Lounger
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    I'm making some enquiries about this. I really thought it had been sorted, but perhaps it hasn't.

    Terry

  9. #9
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    Well my memory didn't deceive me!

    This bug was first picked up as Word 2007 was released. The bug was fixed with ServicePack 1 for Office 2007. My colleagues confirm that the bug is definitely fixed.

    I suggest uninstalling Office 2007, delete the Cambria font, reboot and then reinstall Office 2007 and servicepacks then run Microsoft Update.

    On a computer with Word 2003, uninstall the Compatibility pack, delete the Cambria font, reboot and then reinstall.

    Terry

  10. #10
    4 Star Lounger
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    Well I take that all back. I have now had access to a test PC and can confirm that this bug is still present in Word 2007 sp2 and it hasn't been fixed.

    I'm trying to get some additional information to see if there is a workaround or a fix planned.

    Terry

  11. #11
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    I don't understand how the kerning would not be set by the font or the software currently viewing the document. Are we sure this is only a problem with documents created in Word 2007 and then opened in earlier versions? If so, does the problem survive saving the doc out as RTF and reopening the RTF in the earlier version?

    What happens if you open the damaged document in Word 2003 and change the typeface to something else and then change it to Cambria? Wouldn't this force a redo of the kerning pairs?

    What happens if you increase the font size and then reduce it again? Because kerning is also related to font size, this should also force a redo of the kerning which should remove anything carried over from the Word 2007 problem.
    Andrew Lockton, Chrysalis Design, Melbourne Australia

  12. #12
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    Here's something interesting. I was just looking at the fonts folder on a 64-bit Windows 7 Professional installation. Cambria comes with the operating system here. Clicking on the cambria.ttc font file brings up the usual font sample display, and it shows Version 5.93; no date, but the four font files are stamped 10 Jun 2009 at 16:43:

    cambria.ttc
    cambriab.ttf
    cambriai.ttf
    cambriaz.ttf


    Word (and its SP2) seems to install version 1.02. The January 2010 release of the compatibility pack installs version 1.02. Why aren't these sources installing 5.93? Might this be the problem?

    I'll try moving the version 5.93 fonts to my XP workstation to see what effect this has. Further report to follow.

  13. #13
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    Updating Cambria to version 5.93 on both the Word 2007 and Word XP workstations had no effect on the problem.

    Here's another clue, however:

    In Word 2007 SP2, running on Windows XP SP3, with Cambria v. 5.93:

    1. Create test document with some kerned Cambria text as .docx, it looks fine

    2. Save As .doc and the kern goes bad immediately!

    Since it seems to happen only with Cambria, it must be something in the font file.

    Cambria Regular is a .ttc (TrueType Collection) font file, which also contains Cambria Math. It's the only .ttc in my Win XP fonts directory; in Windows 7 there are 10 .ttc fonts but Cambria is the only one likely to be widely used. Is it possible that there's some quirk in the .ttc format which brings this on?

    Or is the problem in the .doc file format; perhaps it can't properly save kerning information for a .ttc font?

    Further investigation will be required.

  14. #14
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    New development: We've now discovered a particular Cambria "bad kerning" issue in a document where kerning is NOT turned on. When printed to a Xerox 8860 using its PostScript driver, kerning is corrupt. The same document printed to a HP4100 using either the PCL6 or PS drivers is OK.

    This may be nothing more than a Xerox driver issue, unrelated in all but appearance on the page to the discussion above. I need to explore this further with Xerox. Odd however that it happens only with the Cambria font.

  15. #15
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    Yes. That is more than odd considering other problems with that font. Thanks for keeping us abreast of these problems.

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