[pdftex] pdftex core dump when including certain pdf files

Ross Moore ross.moore at mq.edu.au
Tue Jul 19 14:23:18 CEST 2016

Hi all,

I'm fascinated by this application, and the various comments.

On 19/07/2016, at 21:38, "Werner LEMBERG" <wl at gnu.org> wrote:

>> Werner, if file size matters
> It's not only file size!  Accessing the disc for writing unnecessarily
> large files is also time consuming.

How often does this need to be done?
If only once to produce the final PDF, what is the problem?

> Just in case I was unclear: The PDFs without fonts we would like to
> generate (hopefully soon) are an intermediate step only;

If only intermediate, why do they need to be valid PDFs?

> such PDFs are
> not intended for actually being viewed but to speed up the creation of
> a master PDF (with embedded fonts) that includes the font-less PDFs.

Same question.

>> it's certainly worthwhile to investigate what ghostscript can do for
>> you.
> I have no idea what you mean here, please elaborate.  

Ghostscript can read individual files that add to the construction of a PostScript or PDF file.
Those files do not need to be complete documents. They just need to contain streams of graphic commands or other valid PostScript source, which add to what you want to show on a page.

Postscript is an incredibly powerful programming language, indeed it is the basis of PDF; but PDF excludes some of the programming aspects that make PostScript so powerful.
It is a perfect match for use with TeX, provided you avoid the potential for abuse.
Adobe's distiller deliberately excludes some of these features of PostScript, which are still usable with Ghostscript.

> Note that
> ghostscript is *not* capable to merge various subsetted fonts back to
> a single one: too much information is already lost during the
> subsetting process.

Do you believe this is a deliberate choice, or just accidental?
I've found the current maintainer to be very responsive to bug reports and feature requests.
So if this is a mistake, it's likely able to be fixed.

>> This program is amazing.  But whom do I tell it?
> :-)

I agree that it is amazing.
Well, actually it is a very good implementation of an extremely good programming language.
What I find amazing is that, whereas other implementors have removed access to some of the potentially dangerous features of PostScript, these are retained in Ghostscript if you provide appropriate command-line options with your job.

>    Werner

Hope this helps.


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