[tex4ht] erorr code 256, possible perl error code, come up with using --lua option with make4ht, error --- Improper dvi file

Michal Hoftich michal.h21 at gmail.com
Sun Dec 6 12:06:38 CET 2015

Hi Karl,

> Copying the dvilualatex command from the make4ht output and running it
> by hand results in a perfectly fine .dvi file.  So something more is
> happening in between runs, probably generation of intermediate files,
> but I don't see any obvious way to determine what's needed to reproduce.
> Also, it could be helpful for make4ht to run dvitype on any .dvi file
> right after it is created, so that the error can be caught as soon as
> possible in the process.

it is possible to call dvitype in a .mk4 build file, like this:

    Make:add("dvitype", "dvitype ${input}.dvi")

> Also, I think it would be helpful to add a -recorder option to make4ht,
> since what we really want to do is bundle up all the input files to give
> to the luatex developers, along with the command line to reproduce that
> problem.  And the recorder file is what would tell us for sure what
> input files are needed.
> I suppose it could all be figured out from strace output, but it would
> be much simpler to get it from make4ht.
> So, Michal ... wdyt?  Can you add stuff to help debug this to make4ht?

make4ht supports syntax similar to htlatex, so we can add -recorder
ption  as 5th parameter:

   make4ht filename "" "" "" " -recorder"

> (BTW, it would also be conventional to actually recognize --help and
> --version, and send their output to stdout instead of stderr, and exit
> successfully.  Anyway ...)

you are right :) help was actually recognized by the library used for
option parsing, but it was really printed to the stderr, I've fixed that
and added --version option. And fixed it in tex4ebook as well. I will
probably upload it to CTAN next week.

> Thanks,
> Karl

Best regards,

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