[XeTeX] XeTeX and TeX Live 2004

Jonathan Kew jonathan_kew at sil.org
Mon Dec 6 16:24:33 CET 2004

On 6 Dec 2004, at 3:11 pm, Jan Eden wrote:

> Hi,
> I read about problems regarding the current XeTeX package and the TeX 
> Live 2004 layout in Gerben Wierda's distribution. Does this still 
> apply or are there plans to make XeTeX TL2004 compliant?

XeTeX will be converging with TL2004, it's just that I've been too busy 
with non-XeTeX-related work to get a new version out for a while.

> Please do not read this question as being pushy, I appreciate your 
> wonderful work, Jonathan.

Thank you, and it's OK, I don't mind being asked!

> BTW, did you read my last message regarding the dimensions of A4 
> documents generated by XeTeX? They appear to be slightly larger than 
> the pdfLaTeX counterpart, generating warning messages in Preview.

I did see that, yes. Sorry I didn't get a response written.

The dimensions currently used by xetex are based on the A-series 
definitions derived from a square meter of paper and the value of Ã2, 
without rounding. Some sources seem to round down to the nearest 
non-larger millimeter; perhaps I should do that. (Though that still 
doesn't seem to be exactly what pdftex is doing, from the dimensions 
quoted in your message.)

But I also read somewhere that the ISO standard specifies a tolerance 
of ±1.5mm, increasing to larger tolerances for longer dimensions, so 
the discrepancy between xetex and pdftex would still be entirely within 
the official tolerance anyway!

Regarding the default size:
> Related question: How do I configure XeLaTeX to use A4 by default? I 
> seldom have to use letter paper.
There are two issues: the size used by LaTeX to do layout, and the 
media size of the PDF that xdv2pdf generates. The former is entirely 
dependent on package options you specify in your document (such as 
[a4paper]). The latter is dependent on the -papersize argument to xetex 
(or the -p argument to xdv2pdf, if you run it separately); if no 
papersize argument is provided, it should use the default size from the 
OS X printing system. So try setting it in System Preferences; that 
should work provided it isn't overridden by a command-line argument 


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