Making your own switchless installer for any custom fonts you want to include in your Unattended Windows Installation is easy as pie so I decided to make y'all a tutorial as was taught to me by Kelsenellenelvian.
This method will ONLY work for Windows TrueType and OpenType fonts. If you want to install Type 1 or PostScript fonts you will need to use Adobe Type Manager for them.
Tools you will need for the job
Collection of Fonts (maximum 200)
Icon for Installer (optional)
A Directory Lister
A Font Viewer
A copy of fontinst.exe
The instructions below will demonstrate how I built my own MrsP_Sample_FontPack_Addon. I have made a sample pack for you to dissect and follow here: Switchless Font Packs Tutorial (8 MB zipped) It contains all the templates and resource files which are used in this tutorial.
Please note that when you come to build your own custom font addon you will need to make new names for the following:
* For each instance of the word "FontPack" you will be substituting that word for the short title of your own personal font addon pack, eg: MyFonts, ExtraFonts, GurlyFonts etc
* For each instance of the phrase "My Favourite Fonts" you will be substituting that phrase for the full name of your own personal font pack.
Also note that when I use quotation marks to define a folder or path names such as "SVCPACK" you will type this without the quotes.
OK are you ready to begin?
First of all, gather your custom fonts together and place them in a folder called "FontPack". It is strongly recommended that you add no more than 200 fonts to a font addon pack.
Before you proceed any further I strongly recommend that you inspect the folder contents with a utility such as The Font Thing to make sure that your fonts are all correctly named and also to check for any duplicates or corrupted fonts which might cause conflicts later.
When you are satisified that they are all in good order, use your preferred directory lister utility to make a full list of all the fonts in your FontPack folder.
Next, place in your FontPack folder a copy of the file "fontinst.exe".
Also in your FontPack folder make a new blank *.inf file and name it "fontinst.inf" then proceed to the next step.
Open fontinst.inf in notepad.
If you like to notate your script files with comments then add a brief description in the first line, remembering to insert a ";" symbol at the beginning of that line.
Our next line (or first line, if you decided not to include a description) will be the code "[fonts]"
Directly under that line we copy and paste the font list which we made in Step One, like so:
Code: Select all
;My Favourite Fonts [fonts] arial.ttf comic.ttf cour.ttf lucon.ttf tahoma.ttf times.ttf verdana.ttf wingding.ttf
Now we have to pack the files in the FontPack folder into an SFX installer using WinRAR.
Start by selecting all the files in your FontPack folder and then right-click to select "WinRAR/Add to archive..." This will pop up the following program window, where you will select the option "Create SFX archive"
Now move to the "Advanced" tab and open "SFX options"
Under the "General" tab, type "fontinst.exe" in the box labelled "Run after extraction". Fontinst.exe is a windows DOS utility which will install and register your fonts.
Under the "Modes" tab, check "Unpack to temporary folder" at the top.
For "Silent mode" select "Hide all".
For "Overwrite mode" it is strongly recommended that you select "Skip existing files", otherwise you put yourself at risk of overwriting crucial windows system fonts. However, if you are making this font addon pack to update existing fonts in your collection and you are absolutely confident you know what you are about to overwrite then you could alternatively select the option "Overwrite all files".
If you wish to add your own personalised program icon to the SFX installer you can choose that under the "Text and icon" tab by browsing for your icon under "Load SFX icon from the file".
Click "OK", then "OK" again and WinRAR will create for you a file called "FontPack.exe"
Congratulations! You have just made a silent installer for your fonts!
You could keep this SFX file to use in future for an instance where your fonts have become corrupted or missing and you need to restore the entire set. Please note that when you run this SFX installer manually from a working windows installation you will not get any windows popping up to ask you to confirm the installation process, as it is entirely silent (hidden).
For those of you who do not require a custom icon and prefer a "quick and dirty way" to make your SFX installer, just paste the following code into the "Comments" box:
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;My Favourite Fonts Addon Pack, made by Me. Setup=fontinst.exe TempMode Silent=1 Overwrite=2
Next we make a folder which is named by the full final name of your addon pack, for example "My_Favourite_FontPack_Addon". Inside that folder make a sub-folder called "SVCPACK" and move your SFX file FontPack.exe into that SVCPACK folder.
See inside the Switchless Font Packs Tutorial package for an example of the directory structure.
In the root of our "My_Favourite_FontPack_Addon" folder we need to make a new file called Entries_FontPack.ini and then paste the following code into it, substituting your own file names and dates and website where needed:
Code: Select all
;My Favourite Fonts Addon Pack, made by Me. [General] Builddate = 2006/01/31 Description = My Favourite Fonts Addon Pack Language = English Title = FontPack Version = 1.0 Website = http://www.mywebsite.com [EditFile] I386\SVCPACK.INF,SetupHotfixesToRun,AddProgram [AddProgram] FontPack.exe
Last, but not least we send the folder "My_Favourite_FontPack_Addon" to CabTool to make the file My_Favourite_FontPack_Addon.cab and VOILA! we have our finished product.
See? I told ya it was that easy!
[Edit 2007/09/28] I have updated the download package, which now includes this full tutorial (converted to CHM format) and all the required sample files - including the fontinst.exe, which becomes harder and harder to find on the net these days!