Swapping two characters on generate using a custom parameter

Is it possible to do this? I tried using the Rename Glyphs parameter, like this:

Rename Glyphs: a=a.temp, a.alt=a, a.temp=a.alt

But it doesn’t work. Both a and a.alt are missing in the .pfa generated in the Temp folder and the font fails to generate.

How exactly does Rename Glyphs work? The documentation doesn’t go into much detail. Does it make the replacements in the order given? Can a glyph not be renamed more than once?

No, swapping is not possible. When you do a=…, the a is removed from the font for good.

What I have done as workaround is keeping both an a.backup and a.alt.backup around (can be scripted), and then do a simple a.backup=a.alt and a.alt.backup=a.

I hoped maybe I was missing something, but I guess not.

No problem. I already have a script that does it. I was trying to see if it was possible to do the same with custom parameters.


I tried doing it with multiple Rename Glyphs but it only seems to read the first one.

Yeah, tried that, too.

I’ll have a look.

Is there any news on this subject?

Replace Glyphs now really swaps the glyphs, including their properties (e.g. Export).


So what’s the proper way to set this up? For example, if I have ampersand1 and ampersand2 designs, and I want one instance to have ampersand1 as default and ampersand2 as ss01, with another instance having ampersand2 as default and ampersand1 as ss01.

Rename Glyphs: ampersand=ampersand.ss01

EDIT: It is called Rename Glyphs, not Replace Glyphs as previously stated.

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The idea is that you have one ‘ampersand’ and one ‘ampersand.ss01’. In the first instance you don’t need to do anything, in the second you do what Rainer wrote.

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I don’t see “Replace Glyphs” in the drop down list for custom parameters. I typed it in manually, but it doesn’t seem to be taking effect in the generated fonts.

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That was a typo; the custom parameter name is Rename Glyphs.


I have a Multiple Master set up including Poster and Text version of the design.
For the poster styles the lining figures are set as default, but for the text instances I’d like to have the oldstyle figures as default figures and the lining as optional set available via OT panel. What’s the best way to do this using custom parameters?


You need to add two Rename Glyphs parameters.