# When should one use \verb and when \texttt

Sometimes people here use `\verb!A SHORT COMMAND!` and sometimes `\textt{A SHORT COMMAND}`. I'm unsure when to use which.

Are there any guidelines or arguments for `\verbatim` vs. `\texttt`?

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The short answer is you use `\verb` where you need to write a small piece of inline verbatim material that contains characters TeX treats (or rather, is currently treating) as special. `\texttt` is for when you just want typewriter font.

`\verb` has some downsides, such as not working in moving arguments. In those cases, you're probably better off using `\texttt` (or related semantic markup) and performing the appropriate escaping.

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I'd recommend using `\texttt` (or, better, a macro with semantic name that uses `\texttt`) unless you know it won't work for your particular string, such as with `\verb|x=1%2|`. And even then, using `\texttt{1\%2}` is probably just as good. –  Will Robertson Sep 6 '10 at 9:04
Another huge downside of `\verb` I think is it sometimes doesn't work with other environments. I think for instance you can't use `\verb` in a `\section{}` environment. –  CommuSoft Mar 12 '12 at 17:40

Sometimes using `\verb|...|` is better. For example if you copy paste a piece of code like `__start:` in a `\texttt{}` environment you might get an error as symbol "`_`" is not inside a math environment. And then you have to rewrite the code like this: "`\texttt{\_\_start}`". But why would you do this when you can just use:"`\verb|__start|`".

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Notice that `\verb{__start}` will give tons of errors. I've fixed the delimiters: they should be identical characters that are not among those to typeset verbatim. –  egreg Mar 12 '12 at 17:21