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02-03-2011, 07:08 AM
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For some reason, the more recent builds of VLC from 2010 and 2011 have a new annoyance during program startup -- the need to rebuild the font cache. Rather than mimic the few choice fonts you'd normally find on DVDs, VLC wants to avail itself of your complete font library, and has to build a cache. By design, VLC is only supposed to do this the first time it starts up, after install or upgrade, or install/removal of system fonts, and never again. However, that just doesn't seem to be the case.

I've noticed that it happens most often when VLC crashes -- which is the fault of VLC. In my experience, this happens in one of two ways
  1. When I display a video on my secondary monitor of a dual display setup,
  2. Or when I use the "Always on Top" feature for sticking VLC as the always-front window, because I'm multitasking with a lot of windows, and wish to keep my video on top. (This is great for tutorials, or simply watching recorded TV shows.)
The solution is to disable the font cache, and it's relatively simple to do. This work on both the Mac OS X and Windows XP/Vista/7 versions of VLC.

To disable: Follow the simple steps shown in the image.
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  1. Go to Tools > Preferences
  2. In the new window that pops up, in the lower left corner, change it from the default Simple mode to All mode (it's a radio button). This causes the menu entries to change in the left column.
  3. Then in the new menu, use the (+) to expand the Video menu, then click on the Subtitles/OSD entry. Not the (+) -- but the words.
  4. In the right pane, where the Subtitles/OSD options appear, change the Text Rendering Module to Dummy font renderer function.
  5. Save. Done.
You should no longer be hassled when opening a new video in VLC.

Please note that subtitles will still work, using VLC's small internal font library (which likely calls upon standard system fonts available on any computer, like web-safe fonts are), and not your complete catalog of fonts.

For those of us who do complex media work, including a mix of video and page/web design, this was a giant nuisance. Many of us have 500-1,000 fonts on our computers to do design work, and it was a huge workflow delay to wait around for VLC to build a font cache when previewing or watching work-related videos.

Sure, I could use another player, like WMP, KMPlayer or GOM -- but I like VLC!

Hope this helps.

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The following users thank admin for this useful post: manthing (02-03-2011)
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02-03-2011, 10:12 AM
manthing manthing is offline
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wow - this was a massive, buttock-clenching, issue for me.
it was mega frustrating waiting for VLC to rebuild its font cache.
you've saved my life. AGAIN!
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