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When a pdf is generated through LaTeX, the pages will be displayed one on top of the other. These pages may be normally oriented or rotated (through e.g. pdfpageattr).

What I want to know is how we could compile the pdf such that pages 1 and 2 are side by side; then underneath these two pages we have pages 3 and 4 side by size. So instead of the progression down the document being 1 -> 2 -> 3 -> 4, we have 1 , 2 next to each other followed by 3, 4 next to each other and so on.

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That's down to the viewer you use: you want a 'two up' layout. Which viewer is the target? – Joseph Wright Oct 17 '13 at 6:20
I am open to alternatives which might include a wide page with two columns which has the same effect. Then this wouldn't be viewer specific. – user2763361 Oct 17 '13 at 6:23
In this case, you can use \usepackage[a3paper, landscape]{geometry} and a two column layout with sufficient margins. – masu Oct 17 '13 at 6:31

I think the most straightforward way to do it is using the pgfpages package.

This allows you to set multiple "logical" pages in a single "paper" page.

If you put the following code before your \begin{document} you will get pages 1 and 2 in a single page, then pages 3 and 4, and so on...

\pgfpagesuselayout{2 on 1}[a4paper,landscape]

The option landscape tells latex to use a landscape page to fit the two "logical" pages (so they are side by side). Otherwise you get one on top of the other (which is useful for instance for beamer presentations).

You can see more options of the package (spacing, page layout...) at http://stuff.mit.edu/afs/athena/contrib/tex-contrib/beamer/pgf-1.01/doc/generic/pgf/version-for-tex4ht/en/pgfmanualse16.html

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You can also use pdfnup from pdfjam suite of programs to get two or more pages onto a single page. On my linux system

pdfnup infile.pdf

will create a file infile-nup.pdf with two pages per page. You can provide options to input paper size and output paper size.

To put two a4 papers on a single a3 sized page,

pdfnup --a3paper infile.pdf

will do the job.

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