Spectrum Spatial (SSA/LIM)

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Using Custom Symbols in Spectrum Spatial Analyst

  • 1.  Using Custom Symbols in Spectrum Spatial Analyst

    Posted 03-13-2018 14:13

    Hi, I have a MapInfo layer with custom True Type Font Symbols. When I upload this layer to SSA, I do not see these fonts.

    Can you let me know, how to install these custom fonts to SSA?

    Thank you

    Marek Roth

  • 2.  RE: Using Custom Symbols in Spectrum Spatial Analyst

    Posted 03-14-2018 04:10

    Hi Marek

    You need to build the custom symbols into a JAR file and then publish this JAR file on your Spectrum server.

    Here are some more details:

    Building the WAR

    Open command line or Shell prompt and run the following commands. Make sure to execute them in the folder where the images are actually located (otherwise you get folders in the jar file)

    jar cvf <MyJarFileName>.jar *.png

    where <MyJarFileName> is the name of the JAR file you are creating. This statement will include all the png files in the JAR file you are creating.

    Deploying the JAR on the server

    Copy the newly created JAR file and paste it into this folder on the Spectrum server: install_dir/server/modules/spatial/lib.

    where install_dir is the folder where you installed SSA, typically C:\Program Files\Pitney Bowes\Spectrum.

  • 3.  RE: Using Custom Symbols in Spectrum Spatial Analyst

    Posted 03-14-2018 05:15

    Thank you Peter,

    Are these steps the same, if I have True Type Font in *.ttf file?

    jar cvf <MyJarFileName>.jar *.ttf


  • 4.  RE: Using Custom Symbols in Spectrum Spatial Analyst

    Posted 03-15-2018 06:54
    Not sure about this one, Marek, I thought it would use the fonts installed on the server but maybe it works differently with Java...

  • 5.  RE: Using Custom Symbols in Spectrum Spatial Analyst

    Posted 03-18-2018 10:30

    You are rigth Peter, I have installed Tru Type Font on server with standard way and the layer in now displayed correctly.  Thank you for your help. Marek?

  • 6.  RE: Using Custom Symbols in Spectrum Spatial Analyst

    Posted 11-23-2018 13:04
    This has worked for me, thanks @Peter Møller.
    However, they don't appear in Spatial Manager as an option.
    Should these new symbols be available in Spatial Manager?
    Or is there another step?

    John Ievers
    CDR Group
    Hope Valley, United Kingdom

  • 7.  RE: Using Custom Symbols in Spectrum Spatial Analyst

    Posted 11-26-2018 05:41
    Hi John

    Do you mean you can't select them when configuring a layer in Spatial Manager?
    You should be able to see a map using these custom symbols.

    Maybe the files needs to be placed in a certain folder for Spatial Manager to list them.

    Peter Horsbøll Møller
    Pitney Bowes

  • 8.  RE: Using Custom Symbols in Spectrum Spatial Analyst

    Posted 11-26-2018 17:05
    ​In the release coming at the end of this week, (Spectrum version 18.2) there will be a few additions relating to custom image symbols.
    First of all, the administrator can configure a folder in a properties file where external items, including image symbols can be stored in their native form. So no .jar file is necessary. Very much like the Custom Symbol folder in MapInfo Pro.
    This folder has to do with more than custom symbols and includes custom data providers or JDBC drivers but for most people it will be useful for custom symbols.
    Once this this is configured adding symbols to the SpatialSymbols folder underneath it is just putting the image files there. No restart is necessary.
    These symbols will show up in Spatial Manager when creating or modifying a style override in the "Uploaded Symbols" category.
    Note that it is important that the folder NOT be under the Spectrum install so that all the symbols can be maintained (left alone) during an upgrade. Anything under the Spectrum Install folder is removed.
    As for symbols loaded the older way via a .jar file in the Spatial\lib folder, these will continue to work but will not show up in any UI.
    My recommendation is that once you upgrade, rather than adding back the symbols jar file, extract all the images to your configured folder.

    Eric Blasenheim
    Technical Product Manager, Spectrum Spatial
    Pitney Bowes Software
    Troy NY

  • 9.  RE: Using Custom Symbols in Spectrum Spatial Analyst

    Posted 12-06-2019 16:49

    Someone sent me back to this more than year old discussion as I guess in aggregate it is confusing. So here's what I hope is a good summary.

    Spectrum Spatial uses True Type fonts directly from the operating system. Whether Linux or Windows, the fonts should be installed in the standard way and then Spatial will automatically see them.
    However, they must be Unicode fonts. Older fonts from non-Unicode Windows days will not be used and are not supported by Java.  But most fonts these days are available as Unicode
    This also means that creating true type fonts for symbols requires they be Unicode as well.

    Unfortunately, the word custom is overloaded here because it can also refer to image symbols that you want to use. These are the same idea as the images that MapInfo Pro deploys in the CustSymb folder of every installation. Spectrum Spatial includes most of the same images that MapInfo Pro ships with out of the box.
     Users can add their own images within size reasons in that folder and they can be used in MapInfo Pro. There is a button in MapInfo Pro that allows searching for the new symbols without restarting.

    Before version 2018.2 of Spectrum Spatial, to do the same thing required bundling up images in a jar (really just a zip file with .jar extension) and placing them in the code folder of Spatial (the server/modules/spatial/lib). Then you had to restart.  Some of the comments in this thread were around that process.
    My article of a year ago was to introduce the fact that this part had changed and you could now just drop images into a folder that the admin controls and they would work without restart and the UI in Spatial Manager would show them when modifying the style of a point layer, for example. They would also automatically work in Analyst once configured as part of a layer.
    To do this, the admin has to setup where those symbols will live by editing a file called "classpath.ext" that is located in the server/modules/spatial folder under wherever you installed Spectrum.
    That text file will have a commented out example which you can change. In my example, the images will be put into c:\SpatialFiles\SpatialSymbols. The final folder does need to be named SpatialSymbols.

    ## Spatial Symbols
    #D:\Spatial Custom\SpatialSymbols

    That 's really it.  Keeping straight the difference between custom image symbols (png, gif, bmp, jpeg) and true type is really the main issue.

    Eric Blasenheim
    Spectrum Spatial Technical Product Manager
    Troy, NY