Migrate to Glyphs from Fontlab VI


#1

I haven’t been able to find any good guides, instructions or scripts to import projects from Fontlab VI.

Does anyone have experience with this? Any advice, tips, warnings, thoughts?

I’m somewhat surprised by this due to all the problems with FLVI. By now I expected there to be multiple threads on this forum discussing this topic. I suppose I’ve probably just over-estimated the number of people who did anything more serious than some basic testing of FLVI.
I’m aware that FLVI can natively open and save vfb (FLS5 project) files and that there is a script for FLS5 to export a glyphs file. But if one uses the new features of FLVI most of those will be lost or compromised, and somehow there are always problems and discrepancies whenever I open the vfb files created by FLVI in FLS5- too many issues!
There are also warnings about trying to use UFO files as a bridge between Fontlab software and glyphs. Although this advise seems to be dated from before the release of FLVI… Yet, if I recall correctly this is part of an official tutorial which I would expect to be updated if it had changed. So, it seems safe to assume that using the UFO format is not a good option.

So… what is the most accurate and least destructive way to migrate a FLVI project that uses the various new features of the software into glyphs? Has anyone put any though or effort into how one might smooth out this transition as much as possible?
I couldn’t name all the new & unique features off the top of my head that feature in FLVI, and I’m not really familiar enough with Glyphs and all the available plugins to make comparisons and describe potential ways of translating the underlying basic function of those features as truly as possible into the Glyphs workflow; but I imagine that there must be a way to quite accurately make such a transition in most cases.
If I’m not mistaken FLVI can actually open/import a glyphs file, although it can not write/export to this file type (natively or with a plugin/script). And as I understand it, the very purpose of the (native/lossless) vfj file format created by Fontlab is to open up the sharing of FLVI projects with other software packages. However, as far as I know, it seems that no developers, neither Fontlab nor others, have actually produced any tools/scripts/plugins to facilitate this collaboration and use of FLVI’s native projects.


#2

I you can try to export to “designSpace” and open that in Glyphs. Please report if you find missing pieces. then we can look for a solution.


#3

Excellent, thank you very much!

I will report my findings. My Fontlab projects make heavy use of their Elements feature as well as various filters; it will be interesting to see how all of that is handled.