I must confess that I made the mistake of calculating the size of the text 
using the attributed string,
but I did *not* assign the attributed string to the text layer, but instead I 
assigned the orig. plain string.
That way, the text layer must have used a different font for rendering the text,
different from the font that CTFramesetterSuggestFrameSizeWithConstraints() used
(as specified in the attributed string).

So, for the record, in case other people might have a similar problem some time 
in the future, too,
I am enclosing my current version of the code below.

And thanks again! Your suggestions kept me experimenting.
Best regards, Gabriel


    NSFont * font = [NSFont fontWithName: @"Andale Mono" size: fontSize_ ];
    if ( ! font )
        [self logMessage: @"Could not find font Andale Mono!" asError: YES];
    NSMutableParagraphStyle * paragraphStyle = [[NSMutableParagraphStyle alloc] 
    paragraphStyle.lineBreakMode = NSLineBreakByClipping;
    NSColor *color = [NSColor whiteColor];
    NSDictionary * attrsDictionary = [NSDictionary dictionaryWithObjectsAndKeys:
                                      font, NSFontAttributeName,
                                      color, NSForegroundColorAttributeName,
    NSAttributedString * mesg_attrstring = [[NSAttributedString alloc] 
initWithString: mesg
attributes: attrsDictionary];

    textLayer_.string = mesg_attrstring;
    textLayer_.fontSize = fontSize_;                                    // not 
sure this is actually needed

    CTFramesetterRef framesetter = CTFramesetterCreateWithAttributedString( 
(__bridge CFAttributedStringRef) mesg_attrstring );
    CFRange mesg_string_range;
    CGSize string_rect = CTFramesetterSuggestFrameSizeWithConstraints( 
framesetter, CFRangeMake(0,0), NULL, drawRect_.size, & mesg_string_range );

    textLayer_.bounds = CGRectMake( 0.0, 0.0, string_rect.width, 
string_rect.height );
    textLayer_.shadowPath = CGPathCreateWithRect( textLayer_.bounds, NULL );    
                  // set drop shadow

    [textLayer_ setNeedsDisplay];

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