NOTE: I work on a linux computer, so I know these techniques work for the department's linux computers. I tried compiling on a unix computer and the following works for me, but since I don't work on them regularly, I can't guarantee these directions will always work on the department's unix computers.
On a department linux computer
- Run LaTeX to get a dvi file
- Run dvips as follows:
- dvips -t letter -Ppdf thesis.dvi -o
- To get the final PDF, run: ps2pdf
Linux's default paper size is A4, not letter. The -t letter option tells dvips to use letter paper (8.5x11 inches) rather than A4 for your document (if you don't use this, then the top and bottom margins will be really wacky when you try to print it: the top margin will be basically non-existent and the bottom margin will be gigantic).
The -Ppdf option tells dvips to include the pdf fonts (if you don't include this then you'll get a pdf file that prints out fine, but is really nasty looking, grainy, and barely readable when you display it on a computer screen).
Be sure to make the pdf using these steps, if you try to bi-pass by using dvipdf then there is no way to specify these two options, so you'll get a really wacky-margined, ugly-looking pdf file.
- A4 paper, bad font (w/out -t or -P options) (notice the huge bottom margin)
- A4 paper, good font (w/ -P, w/out -t) (notice the huge bottom margin)
- Letter paper, bad font (w/ -t, w/out -P) (notice the bottom margin is reasonable)
- Letter paper, good font (w/ -t and -P) (notice the bottom margin is reasonable)
One Final Note: I noticed that the font problems are *much* less noticeable when viewed on later versions of Acrobat Reader (namely v6.0 and later, which I have on my home computer), they are still there but your really have to look for them. For example, in v6.0 zoom into something like 600% magnification and the "bad fonts" look all jagged, where as the "good fonts" look nice and smooth - this effect is *MUCH* worse on older Acrobat versions, like v5.0 which we have on the department computers. So, it is probably worth taking the time to make sure you get the nice fonts, especially if you are planning to submit an eTD.
On a department unix computer
- Run LaTeX to get a dvi file
- Run dvips or dvipdf (no special options required)
- If you ran dvips, then to get the final PDF, run: ps2pdf on your postscript file
As far as I can tell the final pdf produced by either dvipdf or dvips/ps2pdf look and are formated just fine. (But remember, I don't normally work on a unix machine, so there could be something I'm missing.)
LaTeX on a PC
Yes, you can write LaTeX on a PC (in fact I've been doing most of my thesis writing on my PC laptop). My advice if you want to run latex on a PC is to look into the following programs (which are the ones I use):
- WinEdt -- Shareware program geared toward LaTeX/TeX writing in MS Windows. It has a 31 day evaluation period, then it requires registration (a student license is $30 -- and in my opinion it was well worth it to be able to easily write LaTeX on my PC). (My personal opinion: it's wonderful for writing LaTeX! I prefer using WinEdt on my PC over writing on my linux machine with an ASCII editor!)
- MiKTeX -- freeware LaTeX/TeX for windows (WinEdt needs this installed in order to compile LaTeX)
- Postscript and PDF viewers (WinEdt needs these in order to
create and display PS and/or PDF files from your LaTeX):
- GSview -- postscript viewer for PCs (user-interface with ghostscript), GSview is distributed with Free Public Licenses which "do not require any payment to the author; however the author would welcome any registrations of GSview to cover costs and time involved in developing and maintaining GSview. The registration fee is currently AUD$40."
- Ghostscript -- interpreter for postscript and pdf (GSview requires this to run)
- Adobe Reader -- free pdf viewer
If you should choose to install these programs, then you'll have to remember to also install the class, style, and bibliography style files you routinely use (you can place them in the MiKTeX directory with default classes and rehash TeX so you can always access them, regardless of the current working directory -- this goes for the psuthesis.cls too).
The CTAN (Comprehensive TeX Archive Network) is a great place to download LaTeX class and style files.
Caveat for WinEdt and MiKTeX:
The default paper size for the dvipdf converter is A4! There are two options you can take in WinEdt/MiKTeX to make a letter-sized pdf with normal margins:
- In WinEdt run dvi-->ps (you will be given a dialog, with optional commands to specify, be sure "-t letter" is one of those commands), then run ps-->pdf.
- Edit two configuration files to change the default paper size to
letter. Here is what you do:
- In the MiKTeX directory, at (something like): texmf\dvipdfm\config\ there is a file called config (there is no extension), open that file in a text editor, there is a line about default paper size ("p a4"), change "a4" to "letter" and save the file.
- Next, you need to COPY the file texmf\pdftex\config\pdftex.cfg into your localtexmf directory.
- Open the COPY of pdftex.cfg from your localtexmf directory in
a text editor. There are two lines that read:
page_height 297 true mm
page_width 210 true mm
You need to change those two lines to read:
page_height 279 true mm
page_width 216 true mm
then save the file
- In WinEdt, you will need to go to Accessories-->MiKTeX Options, and refresh the file name database, and update the format files.
And that should should be it to change the default paper size to letter when you run dvipdf.