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Ticket UUID: 3767882e066523dc9ae4475dbdcb6c33dfe57c6b
Title: X Error of failed request: BadLength (poly request too large or internal Xlib length error)
Type: Bug Version: 8.6.6
Submitter: oehhar Created on: 2017-06-27 06:47:32
Subsystem: 46. Unix Fonts Assigned To: jan.nijtmans
Priority: 5 Medium Severity: Critical
Status: Closed Last Modified: 2020-04-14 22:15:59
Resolution: Fixed Closed By: jan.nijtmans
    Closed on: 2020-04-14 22:15:59

Ticket transfered from TCL tracker:

When font metrics is returning fixed fonts, it fails with the X Error in the summary. It is reproducible with this test script on Fedora 25:

foreach family [font families] {
    if {[font metrics \"$family\" -fixed]} {puts $family}

The test code returns fixed fonts then this error:

X Error of failed request:  BadLength (poly request too large or internal Xlib length error)
  Major opcode of failed request:  138 (RENDER)
  Minor opcode of failed request:  20 (RenderAddGlyphs)
  Serial number of failed request:  454
  Current serial number in output stream:  519

The problem is indicated by using strace on the test script:

open("/usr/share/X11/XErrorDB", O_RDONLY) = 4
fstat(4, {st_mode=S_IFREG|0644, st_size=42077, ...}) = 0
read(4, "!\n! Copyright 1993, 1995, 1998  "..., 42077) = 42077
close(4)                                = 0
write(2, "X Error of failed request:  BadL"..., 95X Error of failed request:  BadLength (poly request too large or internal Xlib length error)
  ) = 95
write(2, "Major opcode of failed request: "..., 36Major opcode of failed request:  138) = 36
write(2, " (RENDER)\n", 10 (RENDER)
)             = 10
write(2, "  ", 2  )                       = 2
write(2, "Minor opcode of failed request: "..., 35Minor opcode of failed request:  20) = 35
write(2, " (RenderAddGlyphs)", 18 (RenderAddGlyphs))      = 18
write(2, "\n", 1
)                       = 1
write(2, "  ", 2  )                       = 2
write(2, "Serial number of failed request:"..., 37Serial number of failed request:  454) = 37

The problem seems to be the size of /usr/share/X11/XErrorDB. It is 42077 characters on Fedora 25.

I have tcl-8.6.6-1.fc25.x86_64 and tk-8.6.6-1.fc25.x86_64 installed on Fedora 25.

User Comments: jan.nijtmans added on 2020-04-14 22:15:59:

Merged to 8.6 and trunk.

Still not 100% ideal, but - for sure - far better than the crash ....

Closing for now (but ... if there are further ideas, or other remarks, feel free to add them here). Let's hope Xft will be fixed finally, not much we can do here any more.

chw added on 2020-04-13 18:46:37:
My test results so far (all done on x86_64):

Ubuntu 19.10       works but "Noto Color Emoji" isn't proper displayed

Ubuntu 20.04beta   see Ubuntu 19.10

Fedora 30          "Noto Color Emoji" already sorted out in [font families],
                   specified as -font option wasn't tested
Fedora 31          see Ubuntu 19.10

Fedora 32beta      see Ubuntu 19.10

    NB: Fedora 30 uses libXft-2.3.2, all others use libXft-2.3.3

jan.nijtmans added on 2020-04-13 14:26:12:

Yes, it works now on Ubuntu. (the font used doesn't display as much Emoji as the "Noto" font, but that's not this patch fault .....) Great!

I would appreciate testing by other people, but since this patch only adds Error-handlers, I agree with Christian that this should be merged to 8.6, I see no possible harm doing that. Will do that in a few days, after somewhat more testing.

Great work, good idea!

anonymous (claiming to be [email protected]) added on 2020-04-13 14:25:33:
Comment 12 on Apr 12, 2020 on my bugzilla bug report
gives information about fixing Xft for color emoji support:

    Note that for the past few months, someone has been working
    on Xft emoji support upstream:

chw added on 2020-04-13 10:29:33:
Confirmed Jan's test on Ubuntu 19.10 and 20.04beta, it bails out
in Tk_MeasureChars(). Refined patch against core-8-6-branch is in
unixrfont-3.diff and works now on Ubuntu 19.10, Fedora not tested
but most likely will work there, too.

Since the Xft color font support is still worked on and there might
be more olden Xft installations around for the next months/years
I think we definitely should fix this issue by some workaround.

chrstphrchvz added on 2020-04-13 03:39:41:

Note that for the past few months, someone has been working on Xft emoji support:

jan.nijtmans added on 2020-04-12 18:05:58:
Well, committed this patch to the bug-fix branch.  But ... it doesn't help anything on Ubuntu :-(

chw added on 2020-04-12 17:02:06:
Jan, please try again with the first Tk_CreateErrorHandler() in
InitFont() called before GetFont() like so:

--- tk/unix/tkUnixRFont.c
+++ tk/unix/tkUnixRFont.c
@@ -324,15 +324,21 @@
      * Fill in platform-specific fields of TkFont.
-    ftFont = GetFont(fontPtr, 0, 0.0);
-    fontPtr->font.fid = XLoadFont(Tk_Display(tkwin), "fixed");
+    errorFlag = 0;
     handler = Tk_CreateErrorHandler(Tk_Display(tkwin),
 		    -1, -1, -1, InitFontErrorProc, (ClientData) &errorFlag);
-    errorFlag = 0;
+    ftFont = GetFont(fontPtr, 0, 0.0);
+    if (ftFont == NULL || errorFlag) {
+	Tk_DeleteErrorHandler(handler);
+	FinishedWithFont(fontPtr);
+	ckfree(fontPtr);
+	return NULL;
+    }
+    fontPtr->font.fid = XLoadFont(Tk_Display(tkwin), "fixed");
     GetTkFontAttributes(ftFont, &fontPtr->font.fa);
     GetTkFontMetrics(ftFont, &fontPtr->;
     if (errorFlag) {


jan.nijtmans added on 2020-04-12 15:45:33:
Tested the patch on latest Ubuntu. Unfortulately, it still gives the same X Error.

fvogel added on 2020-04-11 10:42:28:

chw's patch was committed in a bugfix branch.

anonymous (claiming to be [email protected])) added on 2020-04-09 00:55:06:
Thanks for the quick patch.  It would be nice if the Noto Color Emoji could be supported.

chw added on 2020-04-08 22:19:52:
The attached unixrfont-2.diff patch adds the forgotten calls
of Tk_DeleteErrorHandler().

chw added on 2020-04-08 22:05:14:
See the unixrfont.diff proof-of-concept patch against core-8-6-branch
which tries to solve the issue using X error handler at appropriate
places. This excludes the "Noto Color Emoji Font" from the example
script and at least on Fedora 30 remedied the premature exit caused
by an obscure X error. As usual, review and more tests needed.

Big Easter eggs for everyone and take care!

anonymous (claiming to be [email protected]) added on 2020-04-07 17:53:35:
Fedora 32 also has the problem.  All color bitmaps cause this problem in TK.

Refer to for more information, specifically comment 6.

fvogel added on 2017-12-30 20:00:50:

X-link to [b4d47f5419], which is a duplicate ticket but has more info, namely a link to the corresponding Fedora ticket where the opinion of the Fedora guys seems to be stated about Xft.

chw added on 2017-06-28 08:30:23:
Confirmed on a Fedora 25 x86_64 installation. The culprit is the
"Noto Color Emoji" font from the google-moto-emoji-fonts package.
The problem went away after uninstalling that package. Most likely
this is an Xft deficiency (and maybe should be reported to the
Fedora bug tracking system).

bll added on 2017-06-27 12:16:25:
> The problem seems to be the size of /usr/share/X11/XErrorDB.  It is 42077 characters on Fedora 25.

Very unlikely.  Need to know what font it is failing on, so need the strace output before it opens the XErrorDB to get the error text.

On a fairly pristine Fedora 25 (hasn't been updated in years, had to install Tk), I get:
DejaVu Sans Mono
Liberation Sans
Nimbus Mono L

This is most likely a font problem and not a Tk problem.