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Is it possible to tell the LaTeX command not to use line breaks in its console / log output?

This would make it easier to automate the processing of the log file, e.g. extracting the names of missing graphics files like in this output

! LaTeX Error: File `figures/triggers/muontriggers/notmu18_medium_mu10_loose/2d
map_abs_eta_phi.pdf' not found.

which are otherwise cut into pieces and unnecessarily difficult to grep etc.

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See tex.stackexchange.com/questions/4047/…. One of the answers there might help. – Ethan Bolker Apr 23 '12 at 12:50
up vote 26 down vote accepted

You can modify the texmf.cnf variables error_line and max_print_line, adding to the "local" texmf.cnf file, whose location depends on the distribution you're using; for TeX Live it is


and the lines to be added are


The first number is actually arbitrary, but 1000 seems to be sufficient. The error_line variable must be less than 255 and the maximum value of half_error_line is less than error_line-15

For experimenting you can also set the variables in the environment; assuming a Bash shell,

export max_print_line=1000
export error_line=254
export half_error_line=238
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export max_print_line=1000 works perfect for me. Thanks. – fuenfundachtzig Apr 26 '12 at 14:41
For me too, but I had to include it to Makefile or bashrc. The texmf.cnf file seems to be ignored. – Michal Kováč Feb 28 '15 at 17:40

In MiKTeX you can use the option --max-print-line=140 to get longer log lines. This will also affect the output in the command line window but only if have enlarged it before.

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