• OS: Arch Linux x86_64
  • Host: Windows Subsystem for Linux - Arch (
  • TEX: TinyTex


I want to use Windows Fonts and ctex for Chinese writing. So I touch $HOME/.config/fontconfig/fonts.conf which includes the following:

<?xml version='1.0'?>
<!DOCTYPE fontconfig SYSTEM 'fonts.dtd'>

Run fc-cache -fv, and fc-list does show me Windows Fonts.


when I run latexmk -pdf with the example below:

\documentclass[fontset=windows, UTF8]{article}

It reports the error:

Latexmk: This is Latexmk, John Collins, 31 Jan. 2024. Version 4.83.
No existing .aux file, so I'll make a simple one, and require run of *latex.
Latexmk: applying rule 'pdflatex'...
Rule 'pdflatex':  Reasons for rerun
Category 'other':
  Rerun of 'pdflatex' forced or previously required:
    Reason or flag: 'Initial setup'

Run number 1 of rule 'pdflatex'
Running 'pdflatex -file-line-error -halt-on-error -interaction=nonstopmode -synctex=1  -recorder  "test.tex"'
This is pdfTeX, Version 3.141592653-2.6-1.40.25 (TeX Live 2023) (preloaded format=pdflatex)
 restricted \write18 enabled.
entering extended mode
LaTeX2e <2023-11-01> patch level 1
L3 programming layer <2024-01-22>
Document Class: article 2023/05/17 v1.4n Standard LaTeX document class
(/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/latex/base/size10.clo)) (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/latex/ctex/ctex.sty (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/latex/l3kernel/expl3.sty (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/latex/l3backend/l3backend-pdftex.def)) (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/latex/ctex/ctexhook.sty) (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/latex/ctex/ctexpatch.sty) (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/latex/base/fix-cm.sty (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/latex/base/ts1enc.def)) (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/latex/ctex/config/ctexopts.cfg) (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/latex/ctex/engine/ctex-engine-pdftex.def (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/latex/cjk/texinput/CJKutf8.sty (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/generic/iftex/ifpdf.sty (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/generic/iftex/iftex.sty)) (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/latex/base/inputenc.sty) (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/latex/cjk/texinput/CJK.sty (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/latex/cjk/texinput/mule/MULEenc.sty) (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/latex/cjk/texinput/CJK.enc)) (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/latex/base/fontenc.sty)) (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/latex/cjkpunct/CJKpunct.sty (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/latex/cjkpunct/CJKpunct.spa)) (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/latex/cjk/texinput/CJKspace.sty) (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/latex/cjk/texinput/UTF8/UTF8.bdg) (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/latex/ctex/ctexspa.def)) (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/latex/zhnumber/zhnumber.sty (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/latex/zhnumber/zhnumber-utf8.cfg)) (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/latex/ctex/scheme/ctex-scheme-chinese.def (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/latex/ctex/config/ctex-name-utf8.cfg)) (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/latex/tools/indentfirst.sty) (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/latex/ctex/ctex-c5size.clo) (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/latex/ctex/fontset/ctex-fontset-windows.def)) (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/latex/ctex/config/ctex.cfg) (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/latex/cjk/texinput/UTF8/UTF8.enc) (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/latex/cjk/texinput/UTF8/UTF8.chr) (./test.aux) (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/latex/ctex/fd/c70rm.fd) (/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-dist/tex/generic/ctex/zhmap/ctex-zhmap-windows.tex{/home/ausosa/.TinyTeX/texmf-var/fonts/map/pdftex/updmap/pdftex.map}{UGBK.sfd}{Unicode.sfd}) [1] (./test.aux) )
!pdfTeX error: pdflatex (file simsun.ttc): cannot open TrueType font file for reading
 ==> Fatal error occurred, no output PDF file produced!

Among wsl2 Automount options, the default umask is 022, So I do not know why pdflatex cannot open file for reading.

So What's the problem?

  • Welcome to TeX.SE!
    – Mensch
    Feb 12 at 7:35
  • well the first question is if you have the font. Do you have a tex system in "normal windows" where you can try without the additional complication of wsl and mounting? Feb 12 at 10:01
  • Yeah. simsun.tcc does exist in my Windows System. Exactly, it exists in C:/Windows/Fonts directory. In windows I also tried installing Tinytex and everything is good. But in wsl2 it cannot open the font file and I do not know why? As I use wsl2 very often so I want to figure it out.
    – aurora
    Feb 12 at 10:17
  • note you show a configuraton for fontconfig but that's not used by pdflatex or lualatex, only xelatex Feb 12 at 12:16

1 Answer 1


as it happens I installed a fresh texlive 2024 pretest in wsl2 this morning so the following is definitely the only change I needed to make so that your example ran and produces

enter image description here

Just modify


(or more likely 2023 or wherever you installed texlive) to add settings so that it looks in the windows fonts directory

my file now looks like

% (Public domain.)
% This texmf.cnf file should contain only your personal changes from the
% original texmf.cnf (for example, as chosen in the installer).
% That is, if you need to make changes to texmf.cnf, put your custom
% settings in this file, which is .../texlive/YYYY/texmf.cnf, rather than
% the distributed file (which is .../texlive/YYYY/texmf-dist/web2c/texmf.cnf).
% And include *only* your changed values, not a copy of the whole thing!
TTFONTS = $TEXMFDOTDIR;$TEXMF/fonts/{truetype,opentype}//;$OSFONTDIR//:/mnt/c/windows/fonts

OPENTYPEFONTS = $TEXMFDOTDIR;$TEXMF/fonts/{opentype,truetype}//;$OSFONTDIR//:/mnt/c/windows/fonts

just adding :/mnt/c/windows/fonts to the two settings copied from /usr/local/texlive/2024/texmf-dist/web2c/texmf.cnf

  • you can also use fontset=fandol which works using texlive fonts so needs no customisation at all Feb 12 at 11:32
  • Thanks, it works. I did not know "fontconfig is not used by pdflatex or lualatex, only xelatex".Got it.
    – aurora
    Feb 12 at 12:39

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