Clocks colons wrong when not using Cantarell font on fresh Manjaro GNOME

19.0.2 and newer : When using any other font than Cantarell, the colons are slightly off and the wrong font. Applies to:

  • Clock in Panel
  • Clocks in GNOME Clocks app
  • Clock on lock screen

The interesting thing is, that is used to be wrong in 19.0.1 as well and I wanted to report it a couple of weeks ago but it magically resolved itself somehow.

I have seen this bug (lock screen and clocks) in some videos by BabyWOGUE as well. This issue does not exist on Ubuntu, Pop and Fedora.

Left is Manjaro GNOME 19.0.2, right is Manjaro GNOME 19.0.1

  • both running in a VirtualBox
  • both are up-to-date
  • both use Matcha-dark-azul as shell theme and Adwaita Dark as GTK theme

Another interesting thing is either one of the lock screens seems to have the wrong theme.

The numbering really means nothing when you keep the system up-to-date.

Have you made an effort to make sure both systems are fully synced?

sudo pacman -Syu

The numbering really means nothing when you keep the system up-to-date.

Well, that's what I thought.

sudo pacman -Syu

on both machines:

there is nothing to do

The Gnome theming is using a subset of CSS - so the theme must be depending on Cantarell font or at least something similar - I don't know what else could cause the discrepancy in the layout.

I just recognized it is an issue on Fedora as well, which uses plain GNOME, so I will file an issue on the GNOME tracker. It is still very curious that both system seem identical an up-to-date and show different colons. It is also still an issue, since this happens on a fresh untouched Manjaro install.

I opened an issue at GNOME, see https://gitlab.gnome.org/GNOME/gnome-shell/-/issues/2841

The source of this issue is the Ratio character, which is very poorly supported. This makes it even more weird that this does not cause an issue on that specific 19.0.1 install.

I have to revive this issue. The issue persist on a fresh Manjaro GNOME 20.0.3. Nothing is altered or customized.

I gathered a bit more info on why this might be and want to summarize:

The ratio character is a special unicode caracter (https://www.compart.com/en/unicode/U+2236) whis is used instead of the colon by the gnome devs.

Cantarell is one of the few fonts out there which supports that char. Most fonts do not. So if you use any other font (like Noto in Manjaro's case as default) this looks crooked.

I dug around some more and tried to find the differences in configuration between the working installation and any fresh installation.

The only difference is that on the working system Cantarell is a fallback, so if you use the command fc-match to get the fallback for any font, the working system spits out a list, containing Catarell:

fc-match -s 'any-foo-font' | grep Cantarell

On any fresh manjaro install this list does NOT contain Cantarell

I assume this is the source of the issue. I have not found out how to add Cantarell as a fallback for any font by looking through the font config on the working system.

Any help would be appreciated so I can test this out this can be fixed for everybody else as well.

Cantarell font is required by

  • gnome-themes-extra
  • gsettings-desktop-schemas
  • gtk3

As a consequence cantarell-fonts package is installed on every system, which - even remotely - is depending on gtk3.

As your previous quest revealed - it seems - at the roots - to be a Gnome issue - and I if you find the root cause - which for your sake and sanity I hope you do - I believe the best place to register your solution is upstream Gnome.

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