wmf graphics format on Linux, and windows.h

Lennart Sorensen lsorense-1wCw9BSqJbv44Nm34jS7GywD8/FfD2ys at public.gmane.org
Fri Dec 12 14:40:26 UTC 2008

On Thu, Dec 11, 2008 at 06:14:03PM -0500, Zbigniew Koziol wrote:
> WMF stands for Windows Meta File. This is an interesting format. It 
> contains actually calls to internal windows functions to draw vector 
> graphics. It may contain also bitmap data.
> I bought an Atlas of Moscow a few months ago, when there. It was very 
> helpful and detailed, and it contained a CD with all the data there, 
> with maps. These maps are stored just in wmf format. I can find the maps 
> on CD. I could not view them, however, by using Linux. An ugly error 
> message is generated (when using, for instance, display command, but 
> also when using other available around tools).
> So, I found out documentation for wmf format on the internet, analyzed 
> carefully the content of wmf files I have and finally found that 
> changing a value of one, one of the last bytes in these files, allows me 
> to view them! The data were designed on windows and the aim was to use 
> them on windows. It seems that programmers did some sort of mistake that 
> is tolerated on windows but not Linux, which has more strict checking 
> of  file format.  That all is done by libwmf, which unfortunately does 
> not seem to be developing anymore. An error message on Linux asks me to 
> report problem to http://www.wvware.com - but try to access that site 
> yourself...

They could also have done it on purpose to try and make the files only
work with their program.

Seems the site is http://wvware.sourceforge.net/libwmf.html, although no
development in years.  Of course I don't think WMF is really used

> I want to play more with these wmf files. They use function calls that 
> are defined in windows.h . Does any one around has by chance windows.h ? 
> I would appreciate receiving a copy.

Could any of these be the right one:
libdirectfb-dev: /usr/include/directfb-internal/core/windows.h
libgpewidget-dev: /usr/include/gpe/windows.h
libroot5.18: /usr/lib/root/5.18/cint/include/windows.h
libwine-dev: /usr/include/wine/windows/windows.h
mingw32-runtime: /usr/i586-mingw32msvc/include/windows.h

Len Sorensen
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