Adobe InDesign/font embedding issue



I'm a yearbook adviser in Kazakhstan. I've only used yearbook e-design programs and InDesign CS. Well, the only option here is InDesign CS4 and a host of issues I'm not used to solving. I anticipate many challenges come pre-print/packaging time. The printing company speaks Russian (I only English) and their processes do not seem to be too restrictive but not too organized either. Ergo, I have no idea what kind of challenges I will face come submit time.

Anyway, at this point in the year, I have come across an initial challenge. We downloaded a couple fonts for free that we like and have them in our InDesign program. I tried to export to a PDF (I do know the company wishes to have it sent via PDF) but found an unwanted message upon our attempt:

"A bite: This font could not be embedded due to licensing restrictions in the font. A substitute font will be used if it supports the glyphs used in the restricted font. The PDF will not be created if the glyphs cannot be represented."

Is there hope for us? Can we work around this and use this font? Also, If we can't where can we look for free fonts that can be exported into PDF format?



Hi Josh,

You have a couple of options, you can substitute a similar font, I've had good luck using a site called

If that doesn't work you can select the text and use the Create Outlines command, however, once you create outlines all the text will be converted to paths and you'll lose editing capabilities. Create a copy of your document before you convert your text to paths and keep the original on hand in case of text changes.

Hope this helps,

Adobe InDesign

All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Glen Demers


I am a Prepress Technician for Best Printing Online and can answer any question about preparing your InDesign document for print.


20 years working in prepress
Prepress technician for Best Printing Online
Some college training in printing and have attended numerous seminars

Some college training in printing and have attended numerous seminars

©2017 All rights reserved.