[texhax] pdf previewing (was TeX for the blind)

Steve Schwartz s.schwartz at imperial.ac.uk
Mon Dec 11 22:59:35 CET 2006

Getting pdf previewers to do a good job was the subject of an exchange
on this list a while back, from which I recorded the following:

For acrobat reader:

Ctrl-W to close the doc
Alt-left to reopen the previous view (which has to reload the doc, but
positions it and goes to the same spot & magnification).

I think this should work under Windows as well. Not QUITE automatic
refreshing, but only two command-key sequences to do the job.


I just use xpdf (under linux), and hit the `r` key to refresh (reload,
to same page and magnification). 

More sophisiticated
But it gets better if you want:

startup xpdf by using

xpdf -remote key file.pdf &

This sets up an xpdf remote server of name=key (`key' can be any name
you like). Then compile your document using something like

pdflatex file.tex && xpdf -remote key -reload

Which chains the completion of pdflatex to the xpdf server. Then xpdf
automatic reloads whenever pdflatex is done.

And if you give a -raise option as well, xpdf will try to raise the
window (in kde 3.3 it seems simply to prompt you to raise it).

I didn't keep a record of who posted the above to texhax, but hope this


On Mon, 2006-12-11 at 14:00 -0600, Karl Berry wrote:
>     What I hate every second of every day right now is that I cannot keep
>     the file open in the reader and get it to update when the file changes
>     (on Windows mostly these days).
> Unless you need other acrobat-only features, perhaps sumatrapdf (Windows
> port of xpdf, I gather) would help.  I only learned about it recently,
> and have yet to hear from anyone who has actually used it with TeX.
> http://blog.kowalczyk.info/software/sumatrapdf/
> Best,
> Karl
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Professor Steven J Schwartz      Phone: +44-(0)20-7594-7660
Space and Atmospheric Physics    Fax:   +44-(0)20-7594-7772
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