I'm currently writing a math-heavy Ph.D. thesis (more about this in a minute) and, as I truly love Adobe Garamond, I would like to use it. However, given its cost, I would like to make sure that I make the right choice of format, and that I will be able to use it without problem in my documents. Note that focusing on this particular font makes sense to me, as it is one of the most discussed font around.

Many people ask questions about using fonts in LaTeX, and I've spend many hours (really) searching for a bulletproof and up-to-date method to use them. For the record, note that I am working under Debian and I'm not at all used to handling fonts.

Constraint. You see, there is a constraint: as I'm using arxiv.org, I'm somehow stuck with LaTeX (pdfLaTeX). Many "easy solutions" I have found involve switching to XeLaTeX, LuaLaTeX or ConTeXt. However, I simply cannot switch permanently for LuaLaTeX or XeLaTeX (but I can however use them, if it's not too involved, for CV and letters), ConTeXt being even less suitable.

Uses. Now, I'm thinking of two different uses for the font:

  • in CV, letters and such;
  • in my Ph.D. thesis, which I would like to upload on arxiv.org once finished.

Format. Given the circumstances, should I go for:

  • OpenType


  • Type1?

OpenType is totally fine for XeLateX, from what I understand, thanks to fontspec. On the other hand, Type1 is what LaTeX natively uses (but I do not know how to handle it). Also, are Type1 fonts extracted somehow from OpenType as good as native Type1 fonts or is there a quality loss?

Installation & use. Depending on the answer(s) to the previous question:

  • how to install the font (either as it is or via a conversion)


  • how to use it in LaTeX in a minimal example?

Most threads in SX typically only focus on very specific parts of the process, and it's extremely confusing. Usually, I would just go for trials and errors but as I have to purchase first, it doesn't seem to be the best option.

What about maths? How should one deal with mathematical expressions? Possibly: which alternative fonts should one use?

Humble request. I could not find an A-to-Z method to install fonts and use them in LaTeX for a Linux distribution, but I've seen many topics in SX where people display a great knowledge of those things. I truly believe that, if one such person would accept to make a comprehensive and detailed walkthrough, it might be one of the most useful post around. I'd be more than happy to offer as much of my current reputation as I can to such a person. But tell me what you think about that.

I thank you very much for your time.

Edit: I am well aware that arxiv.org does not accept proprietary fonts, but not putting my thesis there is not an option. I'll just revert back to the default font when I upload it there. Edit: Apparently OpenType should be the way to go, even though they are harder to use in pdflatex.

  • 6
    I would go for open type and convert the fonts with the lcdf tools to type1 for pdflatex (naturally the licence should allow the conversion). Regarding a comprehensive guide: I suggest for a start the fontinstallationguide (100 pages). Commented Nov 21, 2012 at 17:49
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    Addition: If you go for open type you should make sure that you get the PostScript-flavoured version (otf). Commented Nov 21, 2012 at 17:58
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    There is a page where they say that proprietary fonts are not supported by arxiv: arxiv.org/help/faq/freefonts
    – Mafra
    Commented Nov 22, 2012 at 0:12
  • 2
    @Alex Why don't you start with lmodern, which should cover all your needs and postpone the experiments with Garamond until you finished the thesis?
    – Keks Dose
    Commented Nov 23, 2012 at 18:45
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    This isn't an answer to your question but... I also love Garamond but after using "Charter", I've fallen in love with it. Do try out including \usepackage[charter]{mathdesign} to see if you like the output.
    – recluze
    Commented Nov 26, 2012 at 11:45

3 Answers 3


Ok, I try to give as many answers as possible:

Decide if you need it and can use it

As you already know, ArXiv does not accept pdfs created from latex code. So you are out here if you use commercial fonts. Of course you can decide the following:

  1. print your articles with the commercial fonts
  2. submit the same article with a public fonts to arxiv
  3. distribute nice-looking versions from your own web site

This is the route many people are going.

Select the font

If you will be using latex based on pdftex and not luatex or xetex engines, you need the type1 fonts. That is well documented and clearly explained. In fact, if you don't have more needs it might be even much cheaper to get the fonts in type1 format instead of otf, but I have not experience with that. Of course you can choose to convert otf fonts, but you might come into license hell by this, unless you are a lawyer and can read the small print.

Check on proper math support

You need to make sure that the font you like has proper math support. Garamond would qualify with a few options. But again, this is up to your decision.

From now on I assume that you have purchased the Adobe Garamond family include Expert Font Set.

Installing the fonts on Debian

First you have to decide if you install the fonts to TEXMFLOCAL or your home directory. This depends on many factors: multi-user versus single user, backup strategies. My recommendation is for font packages to install them into TEXMFLOCAL if it is a single-user system. This makes it much easier wrt to integration into the Debian infrastructure.

Next assume you have received the fonts you have to rename them to proper names. I recommend reading http://mirror.ctan.org/fonts/psfonts/w-a-schmidt/pad.txt for that. Basically the fonts have to be named:

FontName:                   Adobe file name:  TeX file name:
AGaramond-Bold              gdb_____.pfb      padb8a.pfb
AGaramond-BoldItalic        gdbi____.pfb      padbi8a.pfb
AGaramond-Italic            gdi_____.pfb      padri8a.pfb
AGaramond-Regular           gdrg____.pfb      padr8a.pfb
AGaramond-Semibold          gdsb____.pfb      pads8a.pfb
AGaramond-SemiboldItalic    gdsbi___.pfb      padsi8a.pfb
AGaramondExp-Bold           geb_____.pfb      padb8x.pfb
AGaramondExp-BoldItalic     gebi____.pfb      padbi8x.pfb
AGaramondExp-Italic         gei_____.pfb      padri8x.pfb
AGaramondExp-Regular        gerg____.pfb      padr8x.pfb
AGaramondExp-Semibold       gesb____.pfb      pads8x.pfb
AGaramondExp-SemiboldItalic gesbi___.pfb      padsi8x.pfb

like this. Then you put the following files into the respective locations:

*.pfb   /usr/local/share/texmf/fonts/type1/adobe/agaramon/
*.afm   /usr/local/share/texmf/fonts/afm/adobe/agaramon/

Furthermore, get http://mirror.ctan.org/fonts/psfonts/w-a-schmidt/pad.zip and unzip it while being in /usr/local/share/texmf.

After this you have to make the files known to the TeX system by running mktexlsr /usr/local/share/texmf.

Finally, you have to activate the fonts. Here it depends on which version of Debian you are using.

a. Debian squeeze

(currently as of 2012/12 stable, TeX Live 2009)

Add a file /etc/texmf/updmap.d/00local.cfg (create if necessary) and add one line:

Map pad.map

there. After that run update-updmap followed by updmap-sys (both commands need to be run as root!)

b. Debian wheezy and above

(as of current testing, but soon stable, TeX Live 2012)

Add/Edit the file /usr/local/share/texmf/web2c/updmap.cfg and add above line, then run updmap-sys (as root again).

Using the fonts

You should now be settled with your fonts and simple documents should work. In the following example I am using the Euler math fonts. But that is up to you.

% for oldstyle

After this you should be settled with running your documents.

PostScript: Using MathDesign with URW Garamond

Although you have stated that you do not want to use the URW fonts (where I am not sure why), I suggest to give math-design a try. A simple


should show you if this is enough for you, especially if you have your theses already in LaTeX format.

To get math-design on Debian/wheezy you have to install texlive-fonts-extra by calling apt-get install texlive-fonts-extra (as root).

PostScript II: Garamond No8 (garamondx)

If you prefer not to purchase, another option would be the font set garamondx which is not distributed by TeX Live (thus also not Debian), but which is free according to Allading license. They can be used with mathdesign and newtxmath, and might be of interest for you.

How to install on a Debian system: See http://tug.org/fonts/getnonfreefonts/, but simply get http://tug.org/fonts/getnonfreefonts/install-getnonfreefonts, run it with texlua install-getnonfreefonts as root. This will install it into /usr/local/bin and /usr/local/share/texmf. Then call getnonfreefonts-sys garamond and getnonfreefonts-sys garamondx (both as root). That should do all the necessary steps on a Debian system with TL2012, too.

If there are any unclear points let me know and I will improve the answer.

  • First of all, thank you very much for this very nice answer. I have not tried yet but I have already a naive question. You said: "You need to make sure that the font you like has proper math support. Garamond would qualify with a few options." What do you mean by "with a few options?" and, if you know: how can one tell LaTeX to use a given font for the main text and another one for maths? Thank you again!
    – Alex
    Commented Dec 24, 2012 at 13:58
  • @Alex options I know of, but that doesn't mean they are all, are the euler fonts (euler, eulervm, - maybe euler-otf at some point), mathdesign, maybe mtpro2 (commercial), newtxmath. All of them differ in symbols provided. It really depends on what kind of math you are doing and what kind of symbols you need. You cannot get around actually checking the fonts for the symbols you need. As long as you do standard math I guess there are no problems, but special ops or relations are sometimes a problem. Concerning math versus text fonts, that is a complete different story, ... (continued)
    – norbert
    Commented Dec 25, 2012 at 2:49
  • For font selection: with most math fonts you can call the respective package and it will normally only setup the math fonts. By calling a separate package for the text font you set yup both. Example GaramondNo9 with eulervm: \usepackage[T1]{fontenc} \usepackage{garamondx} \usepackage{eulervm}, for Adobe Garamond with eulervm, use: \usepackage[T1]{fontenc} \usepackage[osf]{xagaramon} \usepackage{eulervm}. Some math packages have text font setup included: eg GaramondNo9 or URW with mathdesign: \usepackage[T1]{fontenc} \usepackage[garamond,expert]{mathdesign}. There are many options ...
    – norbert
    Commented Dec 25, 2012 at 3:10

Here's my attempt to answer your question and the summary is: don't do it. Here are the datails:


I've been attempting the same as you did: Converting OTF fonts to use with pdfLaTeX. As mentioned in the comments, the way to go forward is to use the otfinst script. The website gives details and provides a script specifically for Adobe Garamond Pro. As far as I know there should be now difference in using this script under Windows or Linux.

I've used the script to install the font under Windows. The experience was very painful and I would not do it again. In particular, it convinced me to switch to XeLaTeX and/or LuaLaTeX if I have special font needs. This leads me to my second (and more important point):


Here is what I've been through which may help you: For my PhD I am using a modified classicthesis and initially used OTF compiling with XeLaTeX and I hit this problem. Then I switched to LuaLaTeX and hit this problem. Other things to consider (particularly for Lua) is compilation speed if you compile a large(r) document on which you are working regularly. This caused me to go "full circle" and back to `pdfLaTeX´.

This leads to my recommendation: for documents on which you are working on, stick with pdfLaTeX and use a nice complete font such as Palatino (\usepackage[osf]{mathpazo}) or Linux Libertine (\usepackage[t1]{libertine}). A commercial and very pretty alternative is Adobe Minion Pro, which is supported through the excellent MinionPro package. The package includes a nice font installation guide and the necessary scripts.

Using either of this has an important advantage over going through a (paifull) conversion process with Adobe Garamond Pro: You mention that your thesis is math heavy, and AFAIK there is no perfectly complementary mathfont for Adobe Garamond Pro. This problem does not exist for the fonts I mention above: mathpazo has excellent math support and for Libertine and MinionPro you can use the newtx package.

Now, for letters, CVs and other documents using OTF with fontspec is probably more suitable (and easier) to use, so you could use Adobe Garamond Pro easily for these kind of files (BTW: given that you are a student, why don't you purchase Photoshop Student edition which includes serveral fonts, including Garamond Pro, Caslon Pro, Minion Pro and others).

I hope this is at least a little helpful for you.

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    I am not lawyer, but I always wondered if it is possible to use the trial version of Photoshop or other products that include the Garamond fonts for such a purpose. If you only want to use the fonts for your thesis, it is just very expensive to buy them. So maybe it is legal to download the trial version before you hand in the thesis and use these font files?
    – maetra
    Commented Dec 5, 2012 at 19:23
  • @maetra I'm not going to comment on that. All I'm saying is that the student discount for Photoshop is substantial and you get several (expensive) fonts included with it.
    – Jörg
    Commented Dec 5, 2012 at 19:26
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    well I don't think it is good advice to use the Student version since it not allowed to use it for commercial purpose, which in my opinion would be publishing the thesis via some publishing company.
    – maetra
    Commented Dec 5, 2012 at 19:38
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    @maetra I don't see getting the thesis published via a publishing company and using a commercial font being part of this question.
    – Jörg
    Commented Dec 5, 2012 at 19:57
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    @Alex No, why would you loose ligatures in pdfLaTeX?! And yes, Libertine, MinionPro or other Type1 fonts offer searchable PDFs with pdfLaTeX (as does LuaLaTeX with OTF). The only problem are smallcaps and ligatures when compiling with XeLaTeX using OTFs.
    – Jörg
    Commented Dec 7, 2012 at 14:04

I suppose that the URW Garamond is not an option? It works (with mathdesign) fine enough for me, I don't know about the arXiv, though.

  • URW Garamond is a completely different take on the classical Garamond and hence looks completely different (and in my opinion less good) than Adobe Garamond Pro.
    – Jörg
    Commented Dec 6, 2012 at 10:45
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    Well, I'd say "completely different" is a tiny little bit of exaggeration here ... Anyway, the URW type is quite easy to use, so it might just be worth a try.
    – hrbjoern
    Commented Dec 7, 2012 at 14:49
  • You are right, my second "completely different" is an exaggeration :-). I meant it is a "completely different" interpretation of the classical Garamond. As I commented below, URW Garamond and Adobe Stempel Garamond are very similar, but Adobe Garamond Pro is not.
    – Jörg
    Commented Dec 7, 2012 at 14:54
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    URW Garamond is also lacking quite a few features. If anything, a fine free (and open-source) replacement for Adobe Garamond is EB Garamond.
    – raphink
    Commented Dec 21, 2012 at 14:13

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