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Is there any situation in which it would be easier to do things in LaTeX rather than XeLaTeX?

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Related questions: tex.stackexchange.com/questions/36/… tex.stackexchange.com/questions/3393/… contain some info. – gerrit Dec 6 '11 at 8:26
It depends what you mean with LaTeX in this context. XeLaTeX is (a) LaTeX for once. I assume you mean either the "normal" DVI latex or pdflatex or both, don't you? – Martin Scharrer Dec 6 '11 at 9:08
XeLaTeX doesn't fully support microtype. – Marc van Dongen Dec 10 '12 at 9:55
up vote 15 down vote accepted
  • Process old documents.
  • Use old tools which are not compatible with Unicode.
  • For faster PSTricks.
  • Need PostScript output only.
  • Use some specials that XeTeX has not implemented. e.g. patterns and fadings library in TikZ. (Now latest SVN TikZ uses a new system layer to support patterns and fadings in XeTeX)
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also the graphic driver for XeTeX is a mess, it cannot clip images, for example. – Herbert Dec 6 '11 at 8:01
@Herbert: Martin wrote last month in c.t.t. that he has patched xetex.def to add clipping. The file is here (I haven't tested it yet) bitbucket.org/martin_scharrer/adjustbox/src/efbfe90f3968/xetex – Ulrike Fischer Dec 6 '11 at 8:49
@Herbert, Ulrike: The newest version is always under: bitbucket.org/martin_scharrer/adjustbox/src/tip/xetex/xetex.def. I already updated it a little since my c.t.t. post. Most of the technical implementation comes from Joseph Wright as part of his answer to my clipping question. – Martin Scharrer Dec 6 '11 at 9:26
@Ulrike: sorry, but that is not important for me if there might be a file elsewhere. Important is only that what comes with the current TeX distribution and there is still an old xetex.def – Herbert Dec 6 '11 at 10:10
@Herbert: I think it is very good that Martin has started to do something about the "mess" in xetex.def. He needs people who test the new def, and for this he needs that the news about patch are spread around a bit. – Ulrike Fischer Dec 6 '11 at 15:03

Xe(La)TeX exhibits the bug shown in this question, so if you are doing something that requires writing tabs to an output file, it is more difficult to use XeTeX.

I myself encountered this bug when using the externalize functionality of tikz, which writes a Makefile containing tabs. I find that the other features of XeTeX make up for having to hack around this bug, but if you aren't using those other features it is a pure annoyance.

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Good. c.f. egreg's solution by passing -8bit option: Tabs in output file written by xelatex and pdflatex are different – Leo Liu Dec 6 '11 at 9:15

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