[tex-live] Re: Please drop the DVI-with-pdfTeX hack!

Ralf Stubner ralf.stubner at physik.uni-erlangen.de
Fri Sep 9 15:38:47 CEST 2005

"Jonathan Fine" <J.Fine at open.ac.uk> writes:

> My understanding is that, if you are right, then microtype.sty and
> the like are the main beneficiaries of the proposed change.

I don't see how a LaTeX package should be the beneficiary of anything.
The beneficiaries of the proposed change are LaTeX users who want to use
the microtypographic extensions provided by pdfTeX for DVI output or
especially parallel DVI and PDF output.

> "Ralf Stubner" <ralf.stubner at physik.uni-erlangen.de> wrote in message
> news:lz7jdrissk.fsf at tfkp12.physik.uni-erlangen.de...
> <snip>
>> One can already use the 'DVIoutput' option of microtype.sty and then use
>> pdflatex to produce a DVI file, but that makes parallel output of DVI
>> and PDF at least difficult. Of course, microtype.sty could be changed to
>> check for one of the not-masked \pdf... primitives first, but I think a
>> check for the value of \pdfoutput would still be needed, since
>> microtype.sty as different defaults for PDF and DVI output.
> So it seems, as I understand it, that microtype.sty can be changed.

I was a bit too optimistic here. As Frank correctly mentioned in his
reply to your message, microtype.sty not only differentiates between DVI
and PDF output, but also between different versions of pdfTeX. This is
necessary since the microtypographic extensions provided by pdfTeX have
changed over the time. It /might/ be possible to adapt microtype.sty to
the primitive-masking in TeX Live 2004, but it sounds very error-prone.

Please not that the reason for building the LaTeX format using pdfTeX
was to enable the microtypographic extensions for DVI output, too. It
now has been realized that masking some of the new primitves provided by
pdfTeX inhibits to a large degree the very purpose of the original
change. Hence, either go back to using eTeX for the LaTeX format or use
an uncrippled pdfTeX.

>> I am not
>> sure if these changes would be ready before the 2005 release ...
> This seems to me to confirm my original view, that the microtype.sty
> tail is wagging the TeX dog.

Relax, this does not concern the TeX lion at all. We are talking about
the LaTeX format here. The plain TeX format is still produced using 'TeX
the program' without any extensions.


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