Hello! New to Glyphs / Lost in Export

I’m new to Glyphs, and am checking out the 30 day free trial of Glyph Mini. I created my fonts in Illustrator, and copy / pasted into Glyph Mini, letter by letter. It looks good, like, it’s good-to-go. I go to Export, and get the ‘File Type’ dialogue box, I check OpenType and Webfont, my Export Destination is a folder I’ve created in Library > Application Support > Adobe > Fonts and Export to that file, get the ‘Export Finished’ dialogue box ‘The new font was exported successfully’, and then, see the .otf file and a .woof file. When I click on the .otf file, it takes me to the ‘Letter, Latin’ page of Glyph, where you create the fonts. The other file, the .woof file, takes me to a dialogue box with code. Do I need to register / purchase Glyph Mini in order to create the font? What am I doing wrong? Something is happening, or, not happening in the Export aspect of the procedure here. Any info / tips / insight / suggestions welcome…thank you!! I’m excited to learn more about this software, and, if things go smoothly, get a lot of use out of it…thanks!

The .otf is the desktop font; the .woff file is the web font.

To use the font you need an application such as InDesign or Illustrator if you leave the font where it is. To use it in other applications such as Word it must be moved to a user Fonts folder.

Thanks so much for addressing this issue, and, the info. I had read up a bit on the Glyphsapp.com site before posting my question, and did see a suggestion that you create a ‘Fonts’ folder in the Adobe Library folder, and, in doing so, this should resolve any issues when using Adobe products (which I do: InDesign, Illustrator, Photoshop), but, that still does not seem to work. Do I need the license (I’m using the 30 day trial) in order for the program to work 100%? If I did have the .otf file on my desktop, or, shared with others, shouldn’t one just be able to click and install? Thank you, George_Thomas, for any further info, if any, you can provide. I greatly appreciate it!

No. It is the same app.

  • Clicking once should just select the file in Finder.
  • Double clicking opens a file in the app that is set to open that type of file.
  • Right clicking and choosing Open in gives you control over which app to open the file with.

You can also select the file, and press Cmd-I and in the Info dialog that comes up for the file, define yourself which app you want to open this file type in.

Hello, Rainer,

I had to step away from this for a few days…I’ve done all of the above, yet, still cannot seem to create a workable font / .otf file. Also, I downloaded new fonts (freebies from Creative Market), and, when I went to install the fonts, clicking on the .otf files, they opened up in the Glyph App, and were not installable. I had to uninstall the Glyph App in order to install the fonts.

I understand you are connected with Glyph (I read a good deal of the PDF), so, any info you might have, or, if there’s a weird ‘glitch’ I’m encountering, for some reason, I imagine you are the right person to speak to!

Thank you!


Hi Annie,

You should look at Lynda.com’s online course about Font Management Essential Training. It is by Mike Rankin, one of the main contributors to InDesign Secrets (and hence rather knowledgeable as well as a very good teacher).

The Lynda.com courses are generally great (especially for Adobe apps). They also have some excellent courses about using Glyphs by Charles Nix, former president of the Type Directors Club. Although these are about Glyphs and not Glyphs Mini, much of what he teaches should be equally applicable.

Best of all, Lynda.com ‘membership’ is usually free through your public library (at least in the USA). I have learned a great many things from these courses that I almost certainly would never have discovered on my own. Well worth the time—and almost certain to answer your questions (and then some).

Having said that, it is worth adding something of an answer to your question. OTF files are nothing more than documents on your computer, much like PDFs or Word documents or whatever. What you are doing when you double-click on a font to install it is really just opening it with the Font Book app, which is a standard macOS utility. This is in essence no different from double-clicking on a PDF to open it in either Acrobat or Preview, or like double-clicking on a JPEG file to open it in Photoshop (or again perhaps, Preview). When you installed Glyphs Mini, your computer was told (by the installer) to open OTF files with Glyphs instead of Font Book. And rightly so. You are now a font designer, and fonts should be opened in an app that can edit them. No worries. In Finder you can always choose File > Open With and then choose Font Book instead of Glyphs from the list of apps that know how to do something with an OTF file. You can also do the same thing by choosing Open With from a pop-up menu that you get by right-clicking on the file in the Finder. Indeed, you could instead accomplish the same thing by launching Font Book and choosing File > Add Font… from the menus. These all do the same basic thing, the thing which one generally thinks of as ‘installing’ a font.

Then again, you shouldn’t need to ‘install’ the font at all in order to use it in Adobe apps such as InDesign or Illustrator. If you have the OTF file in the Adobe fonts folder—which you said in your first post you had exported to—the font should just show up in the font picker of Adobe apps. There is no need to install it system-wide. On the other hand, you do need to ‘install’ it system-wide via Font Book if you want to see it in non-Adobe apps such as Word or TextEdit. (But then you run into potential cache problems if you later edit the font. If I recall correctly, avoiding cache problems is in large part what the Glyphs tutorial about the Adobe fonts folder is all about.)

Hope that helps. As I say, this and much more is to be learned from the online training course from Lynda.com, but hopefully this will help you get started.

Best of luck and welcome to the wonderful world of fonts,

No! That is not necessary. Did you read my post from above? I explained how to control in which app a font opens. Let me know which part you did not get.

Installing a font means opening it in Font Book (or a third-party font manager, if you have one). On your system, fonts were set to open in Glyphs, but you can change that setting.

You send a direct email message instead of posting to the forum:

I think @ecuk explained it in all detail.

As he explained, each file is associated with an app. By default, fonts are associated with Font Book. But sometimes, another app gets assigned. And the user can set it manually (see below).

What you need to to is open the font in Font Book. You have several options.

  1. Open Font Book manually. You find it in the Applications folder. Then instead of double clicking the file, you drag it on the Font Book icon in the Dock.

  2. You right click the .otf and choose Font Book from the “Open With…” context menu.

  3. Selcht the font in find and press Cmd+i. In the “Open With:” section, pick Font Book from the popup and then press “Change All…”. That will restore the previous double click to open in Font Book.