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windows-server-2016Microsoft is expected to announce the final release of Windows Server 2016 at the Ignite conference in Atlanta.

We understand that many IT Admins are keenly interested to take advantage of the benefits this new OS. Here is the current support of our server products:

 

Universal Type Server

Universal Type Server version 6.1.1 has been tested and is compatible with Windows Server 2016.

NOTE:  The Standard and Datacenter Editions of Windows Server 2016 are the supported versions. Nano and Server Core versions may work but haven’t been tested. Please contact Extensis Technical Support with issues

 

Portfolio 2016

Portfolio 2016 version 2.5.3 has been tested and is compatible with Windows Server 2016.

NOTE:  The Standard and Datacenter Editions of Windows Server 2016 are the supported versions. Nano and Server Core versions may work but haven’t been tested. Please contact Extensis Technical Support with issues

 

Questions?

Please let us know if you have any specific questions or concerns about running Extensis products on Windows Server 2016.

You can place a comment below, or contact our Technical Support team at www.extensis.com/support


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You’re no girl scout. You aren’t designing bake sale fliers anymore. And even if you were, the font list in your favorite pro design software is an endless black pit of scrolling, turning a simple font selection task into a pull-your-hair-out, existential crisis sort of situation. Have you seen that thing lately? Go ahead, open it up and take a look. That list is a behemoth!

You could choose to get lazy and make a “James Cameron” decision (i.e. opt into an overly-trodden and dare I say disgusting font like Papyrus for your high-profile project and thus make every designer that presses ‘play’ nauseous). OR, you could check out the wide world of font management, tame your font game and take control of your workflow while improving your final products.extensis-avatar-movie-papyrus-font

 

 

If you’re hearing church bells in your head, but are a Macintosh user, reroute over this way; if you use Windows, swerve this way to download the PDF booklet, or tread on for an abbreviated version in this post.

So, here are some highlights of our Windows Font Management Best Practices Guide. Increasing workflow and getting more organized with your typography starts here:

Continue Reading »


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UPDATED September 9, 2015

Microsoft Windows 10 officially became available today.

The following is the current support for Extensis products and Windows 10.


Font Management Products

Suitcase Fusion

The current version of Suitcase Fusion 6, v17.2 is compatible with Windows 10. Use the Check for Updates feature to download the update, or download the newest installer from the Support page.

Universal Type Server

Universal Type Client

The current version of the Universal Type Client 5, v 5.2.1 is is compatible with Windows 10. Download and run the newest installer from the Support page.

Server

The Server requires a server-class operating system and hardware. It is not supported for use on Windows 10. See this page for supported configurations.

Try Universal Type Server for Free


Digital Asset Management Products

Portfolio

Portfolio Web, Express & NetPublish

Windows 10 includes an entirely new browser, Edge. We have tested Portfolio Web, Portfolio Administration and Portfolio NetPublish sites using Edge and have not found any issues. Windows 10 is now an officially supported operating system for use with these applications.

Server

The Server requires a server-class operating system and hardware. It is not supported for use on Windows 10. See this page for supported configurations.


Max Kerning, now on Windows

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Wait, doesn’t Max look a bit like a favorite former head of a major software company?


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Microsoft Office for Mac - Open XML converters

If you’re a Microsoft Office 2004 for Macintosh user like me, Microsoft has just shown us some love.

You may be using the older version of Microsoft Office for many reasons – corporate policy, budget for upgrades, etc. Yet, you have probably already received files created by the newer versions of Microsoft Office for Mac or Windows that don’t look anything like what you’ve seen before. Typically the extension for these new files ends in the letter ‘X’ that indicates that the files is an “Open XML” file.

This week Microsoft released a file converter that allows users of Office 2004 to convert, open and edit files saved in Open XML format. It’s a handy feature that will allow me to stay in the loop until I get the chance to fully upgrade to the latest and greatest version of Office.

Check it out over on Microsoft’s Mac site, Mactopia.


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Fonts, typefaces and the web, oh my!Using fonts on the web has been a constant challenge for web designers. You may want to use a snazzy typeface on your site, but with most standard HTML sites you need to rely upon whatever fonts the user has installed on their system. This is of course for good reason – it protects the intellectual property of typeface designers, and makes sure that the “per user” font licensing model is respected.

Typically if a web designer wants to use a fancy typeface that can’t be guaranteed to be on a user’s system, the designer can typeset the appropriate text and save it in a GIF or JPG for use on the site (like I’ve done in this post). This displays the text on the site, and protects the typeface designer, since the end user cannot easily recreate and use the typeface.

Embedded fonts

With Adobe Flash, Microsoft Silverlight, and other web technologies, it has become a bit easier to embed fonts within tiny web applications. This can allow the end user of the application to see the appropriate font, and it can be typically displayed as live text that can be quickly reformatted, rather than being stuck in an image. Of course, when you deliver and use fonts in this way, you are coming up against a new form of font usage that may be outside of the typically licensed use. At this point you could be considered and Independent Software Vendor and depending how your web application is used, it is likely that you will need a separate deal with your typeface vendor. I’ll have more on Independent Software Vendor (ISV) and Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) font license deals in the coming weeks.

Of course, there even more areas where you may run into embedded typeface trouble on the web. For example, if you’re a printer who has a web interface that allows users to create custom rubber stamps using a wide variety of typefaces, you had better work with your type vendor to strike up a deal. This situation could come into problems on two fronts. The web user can be considered a user of the typeface, and when a rubber stamp is created, it is effectively creating a re-usable copy of a unique typeface. Before you run into legal trouble here, it’s best to talk to your type vendor as well as your own lawyer.

The bleeding edge

So, you say, there’s got to be an easier way of dealing with typefaces, fonts and the web. There’s a new approach that attempts to attack the problem, and it all started off in the open-source world. It basically allows the a web designer to link to a font that is on any web server, and have the end-user’s web browser display the page using that remote font. This method of font use has typeface designers very concerned, and rightly so. If this font use model continues, it could effectively pull the run out from under the entire current per-user font licensing model. Linking to fonts on a web server that were purchased under the current licensing model could very easily be construed as font piracy. Since the current licenses typically are on a per-user model, and by placing the font up on a website, many, many users could potentially be using the same font – all without paying for it.

As far as I know, this functionality is only built into Apple’s Safari browser and the Opera browser. The fact that Apple is including this “feature” in Safari is a bit ironic in my book. Apple has always been a friend to the creative folk who have fairly consistently supported them through the ups and downs of their technological swing. This Safari move takes aim at making a gaping financial hole in what currently is a fairly small, but creative typeface design community. Now that Apple is in a huge upswing, it’s the time for us to watch and make sure that they don’t start behaving like a monopoly and pushing the little guys around.

What’s good to hear in this area is that Bill Hill, Lead Researcher at Microsoft recently commented at the Business of Type conference at Microsoft that including this feature isn’t in the plan at all for Internet Explorer. I seem to remember him describing his opinion in his typically colorful way, “We’ll go there kicking and screaming, if we go there at all.” Typeface designers should know that they have a friend in Microsoft, and I surely hope that this sentiment continues with their leadership.

Time will only tell what will happen in this area. Since only a few browsers support this remote font use technology, I don’t think that it will be very widely used. And heck, web designers do use the technology open themselves up to all sorts of potential legal problems. It’s probably best to just stay away from using this technology until everything shakes out.

Stay tuned for a post on ISV/EOM font licensing in the coming weeks. Over and out.


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Extensis EULA image - not an actual document, just a picture of the EULA in the Portfolio Help systemI’ve been talking recently about the importance of End User License Agreements (EULAs) when working with fonts and typography. I’ve heard back from a number of users who wish that these documents were more easily understood and readily available for reference.

Well, here’s the good news. While at a recent conference at Microsoft called The Business of Type, there was a definite consensus that making EULAs clear, explicit and readable was desirable. We’re not all there yet, but we’re definitely moving down the path toward transparency and a decent process.

Take for example, John Collins of MyFonts gave an interesting presentation at type conference. His company takes an open approach to license agreements.

  • All licenses are publicly accessible from the MyFonts.com website.
  • You are given a chance to review the EULA as you purchase fonts as well as any time after from your order history on the MyFonts.com site.
  • The installer presents the license during the install process.
  • Updated licenses only apply to future purchases.

The MyFonts.com model doesn’t make you jump through hoops to understand what you’re purchasing, and is fairly straightforward. This is the way that licensing should work. Yet, from what I’ve seen there are still some foundries and software companies out there need to update their licensing processes.

For example, when you install software from Extensis, you will always be presented with a copy of the EULA in the installer. And, if you can’t easily read the license in the installer window, we always install a copy of the EULA for you to print, review and keep. We will always present a copy of the EULA in our Help systems for Extensis Portfolio as well as in the forthcoming Universal Type Server product.

Since not all companies are being so open with their licenses, I would like to make a public call for all companies who make software (fonts are software after all) to handle EULA in the following manner:

  1. Write EULAs in plain language, not legalese. Users want to understand these agreements – no one likes to go to court.
  2. Display license agreements in as many locations as possible – on the web, in the installer, installed with the product, etc.
  3. Clearly delineate EULA variations available. For example, if for an extra cost users will be allowed to transfer fonts to a printer, make the options clearly understood, even if pricing is not immediately disclosed.
  4. Be reasonable. Most users want to do the right thing. If you find out about a license violation, approach the situation politely, without an immediate legal threat. Even with digital piracy rampant these days, some polite conversation goes a long way, and will more likely earn you a friend than a foe.

Is there something else that you think companies should do to make licensing easier? Let me know in the comments and I’ll send you some stuff from my pile of Extensis swag.

As always, if you ever have a question about the Extensis EULA, please don’t hesitate to contact one of our corporate sales representatives. They are happy to discuss all of your concerns.


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In this second outing into the conversation about font licenses (or End User License Agreements – EULAs) let’s explore another “outside the box” use that you might come across when working with fonts and typography.

FontLab TransType Pro can help you convert a font from format to anotherSo, what happens when you’ve purchased a license for a Postscript version of a font, and then your client/printer/whomever indicates that they only want you to use True Type fonts. You’ve already purchased a license for the font, so can you convert that font using a tool such as FontLab’s TransType and still stay within the terms of your license?

Believe it or not, some licenses will allow such conversions! Adobe® fonts are allowed to be converted from one format to another, even though some other foundries specifically prevent this type of data manipulation. When manipulating a font, whether to convert it’s format or to add a new glyph, the most important thing to remember is that you should never expect any technical assistance with the resultant font.

Adobe product manager for fonts and global typography, Thomas Phinney, confirmed Adobe’s position during a panel discussion at the recent Business of Type conference held at Microsoft this spring. That’s good news for those of us who have purchased an older copy of Adobe Font Folio® in Postscript and are aching for some font format flexibility. Heck, if you’ve got the cash, it’s probably best to just avoid font conversion issues and move your font collection over entirely to OpenType fonts.

Of course, if you have any questions about what you’re allowed to do within your own font licenses, be sure to consult with your legal advisers.


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Fence FontI came across a nice analysis of OpenType from Hoefler & Frere-Jones where they talk about the pros and cons of moving to OpenType. Part of the Font Management Best Practices talk that I give talks about the different types of fonts, and while I would love to get in-depth about the different flavors and open up a whole discussion about that, most of the time I only get an hour for the whole thing so I have to speak briefly about each type of font and then move on.

Most importantly they are not Adobe or Microsoft (responsible for the OpenType standard) but they are a foundry with a lot of knowledge and experience so it feels less like you’re being sold a whole new set of fonts and more like someone who just knows a lot more than you is laying it out the way it is.

I am thrilled to pieces about OpenType, mostly because at my house we have both Mac OS and Windows in varying flavors and with OpenType I can make certain that anything I’m working on will look the same no matter what machine I’m at. I don’t have to worry about making sure the same font is available in a Windows version and I don’t have to worry about matching up pieces of PostScript either. OpenType strikes me as a very obvious thing that should have been done ages ago. I’m glad it finally happened.

If you want to know more, you can check out Seneca Design’s list of OpenType resources, and some neat and interesting tips from CreativeTechs about OpenType and things you may not have known it could do.


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Microsoft and FDRC.org host Business font Seminar

Microsoft and FDRC.org sponsor business type seminarThe Microsoft type team forwarded this my way…

On April 3 and 4 Microsoft is hosting a type-oriented seminar focused on IP protection and font-related technologies.

Organized by the Font Designer’s Rights Coalition, this Font Business Summit is open to type designers and foundries by invitation. If you are interested in attending, please contact janet AT fdrc DOT org while there are still spots available.

Go here for more information.

Courtesy of Si.


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