tree: 69973a657ebce6456f41acc2877b4a8e896af565 [path history] [tgz]
  1. examples/
  2. src/
  3. testing-tools/
  4. .cargo-checksum.json
  5. Cargo.lock
  6. Cargo.toml


Build Status Documentation Rust 1.35+

A high-level, safe, zero-allocation TrueType font parser.

Can be used as Rust and as C library.


  • A high-level API, for people who doesn't know how TrueType works internally. Basically, no direct access to font tables.
  • A C API.
  • Zero heap allocations.
  • Zero unsafe.
  • Zero dependencies.
  • no_std/WASM compatible.
  • Fast. See the Performance section.
  • Stateless. No mutable parsing methods.
  • Simple and maintainable code (no magic numbers).


  • The library must not panic. Any panic considered as a critical bug and should be reported.
  • The library forbids the unsafe code.
  • No heap allocations, so crash due to OOM is not possible.
  • All recursive methods have a depth limit.
  • Technically, should use less than 64KiB of stack in the worst case scenario.
  • Most of arithmetic operations are checked.
  • Most of numeric casts are checked.


It's very hard to compare different libraries, so we are using table-based comparison. There are roughly three types of TrueType tables:

  • A table with a list of properties (like head, OS/2, etc.).
    If a library tries to parse it at all then we mark it as supported.
  • A table that contains a single type of data (glyf, CFF (kinda), hmtx, etc.).
    Can only be supported or not.
  • A table that contains multiple subtables (cmap, kern, GPOS, etc.).
    Can be partially supported and we note which subtables are actually supported.
Memory safe
Thread safe~ (mostly reentrant)
Zero allocation
Variable fonts
Rendering~ (very primitive)
avar table
bdat table
bloc table
CBDT table
CBLC table
CFF  table~ (no seac support)
CFF2 table
cmap table~ (no 8)~ (no 2,8,10,14; Unicode-only)
EBDT table
EBLC table
fvar table
gasp table
GDEF table~
glyf table~1~1
GPOS table~ (only 2)
GSUB table
gvar table
head table
hhea table
hmtx table
HVAR table
kern table~ (only 0)~ (only 0)
maxp table
MVAR table
name table
OS/2 table
post table
sbix table~ (PNG only)~ (PNG only)
SVG  table
vhea table
vmtx table
VORG table
VVAR table
LanguageRust + C APICC
Dynamic lib size<300KiB2~760KiB3? (header-only)
Tested version0.
LicenseMIT / Apache-2.0FTL / GPLv2public domain


  • ✓ - supported
  • ~ - partial
  • nothing - not supported


  1. Matching points are not supported.
  2. When using from Rust, the library binary overhead depends on used methods and can vary from 10KiB up to 100KiB.
    When using from C, we have to include the Rust's std too, which blows up the size.
  3. Depends on build flags.


TrueType fonts designed for fast querying, so most of the methods are very fast. The main exception is glyph outlining. Glyphs can be stored using two different methods: using Glyph Data format and Compact Font Format (pdf). The first one is fairly simple which makes it faster to process. The second one is basically a tiny language with a stack-based VM, which makes it way harder to process.

The benchmark tests how long it takes to outline all glyphs in the font.

glyf0.835 ms1.194 ms0.695 ms
gvar3.158 ms3.594 ms-
CFF1.114 ms5.946 ms2.862 ms
CFF21.763 ms7.001 ms-

Note: FreeType is surprisingly slow, so I‘m worried that I’ve messed something up.

And here are some methods benchmarks:

test outline_glyph_276_from_cff2 ... bench:         778 ns/iter (+/- 15)
test from_data_otf_cff           ... bench:         760 ns/iter (+/- 13)
test from_data_otf_cff2          ... bench:         709 ns/iter (+/- 25)
test outline_glyph_276_from_cff  ... bench:         678 ns/iter (+/- 41)
test outline_glyph_276_from_glyf ... bench:         649 ns/iter (+/- 11)
test outline_glyph_8_from_cff2   ... bench:         476 ns/iter (+/- 14)
test from_data_ttf               ... bench:         352 ns/iter (+/- 11)
test glyph_name_post_276         ... bench:         223 ns/iter (+/- 5)
test outline_glyph_8_from_cff    ... bench:         261 ns/iter (+/- 13)
test outline_glyph_8_from_glyf   ... bench:         281 ns/iter (+/- 5)
test family_name                 ... bench:         183 ns/iter (+/- 102)
test glyph_name_cff_276          ... bench:         109 ns/iter (+/- 1)
test glyph_index_u41             ... bench:          16 ns/iter (+/- 0)
test glyph_name_cff_8            ... bench:           7 ns/iter (+/- 0)
test glyph_name_post_8           ... bench:           2 ns/iter (+/- 0)
test subscript_metrics           ... bench:           2 ns/iter (+/- 0)
test glyph_hor_advance           ... bench:           2 ns/iter (+/- 0)
test glyph_hor_side_bearing      ... bench:           2 ns/iter (+/- 0)
test glyph_name_8                ... bench:           1 ns/iter (+/- 0)
test ascender                    ... bench:           1 ns/iter (+/- 0)
test underline_metrics           ... bench:           1 ns/iter (+/- 0)
test strikeout_metrics           ... bench:           1 ns/iter (+/- 0)
test x_height                    ... bench:           1 ns/iter (+/- 0)
test units_per_em                ... bench:         0.5 ns/iter (+/- 0)
test width                       ... bench:         0.2 ns/iter (+/- 0)


Licensed under either of

at your option.


Unless you explicitly state otherwise, any contribution intentionally submitted for inclusion in the work by you, as defined in the Apache-2.0 license, shall be dual licensed as above, without any additional terms or conditions.