Default Font ignored

Thu, January 27, 2005, 01:01 PM under MobileAndEmbedded
In a Sentence (or five)
When NETCF controls are created they have a default Font. You would expect the default Font to be picked from the platform (operating system) default Font. However, that is not the case and instead they start of with Tahoma. This cannot be defended as a design choice so it must be a bug! Vote for it to be fixed (the bug is present in CF 1.0 and CF 2.0).

Repro Steps
1. Create a new form
2. Add a button to it (or any other control including custom ones)
3. In the button event handler put the following code:
MessageBox.Show(this.Font.Name,Button1.Font.Name); //C#
MessageBox.Show(Me.Font.Name,Button1.Font.Name) ' VB
4. You see Tahoma, Tahoma (assuming your system default is Tahoma)

5. Change the system's default Font to Arial or Courier New (or some other Font on your unit)

6. Reset the unit and run the test again
7. You see Arial, Tahoma (they should both be Arial - or whatever the system default is)

Why Fix the Bug
1. 99.99% of controls never have their Font changed by the developer; in fact the only times we change font is for size or style, not name. Hence we expect the Font to be the system default.
2. If we run an app like that on a unit where the default font has changed, it will not pick it up.
3. eVC defaults to system Font so there is no precedence of hardcoding default fonts
4. As the repro steps show, there is inconsistency within the implementation itself. The title bar caption/text the default font whereas the other controls use the hardcoded Tahoma
5. Further inconsistency is that the menu fonts are picked up properly. Even the built-in error handler dialog picks up the correct Font.
6. Changing the Font of every control in Smart Device projects is more cumbersome than the desktop since changing the Font of a container (e.g. Form, Panel) does not propagate to the children controls (no Ambient properties on CF)

How I came across it
Due to other reasons, we have to change the default font of our platform to Arial. Half the screens look odd and I now have to go and explicitly change the Font for all controls. Yes I know "poor me" but that is not the point. Next time we decide to change the default Font I will have to change the hardcoded values since the NETCF controls are not smart enough to pick the default.