Hide section numbers, but keep numbering

How do I hide section number in section heading ? I can't just use \section*{xxxx}, because I want subsections numbered correctly. I also tried :

\section*{xxxx}
\stepcounter{xxxx}


Which hides section number and keeps subsection numbers. Unfortunately this solution also hides section in table of contents, which is undesirable.

Next attempt was :

\chapter{}
\section*{xxxx}


However this made numbering of subsections continue on and on instead of reseting at new section. So what can I do to make it behave as normal, just not showing section numbers ? Thanks!

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migrated from stackoverflow.comNov 2 '12 at 13:51

This question came from our site for professional and enthusiast programmers.

I think your best bet is to redefine \thesection, which is the macro that normally prints the section number.

\renewcommand\thesection{}


If you want subsection numbers to include the section numbers that aren't getting printed, you will also need to redefine \thesubsection, which normally calls \thesection:

\makeatletter
\renewcommand\thesection{}
\renewcommand\thesubsection{\@arabic\c@section.\@arabic\c@subsection}
\makeatother

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Ok works well in hiding section number.Problem with this command is that it also hides section number in subsection numbering, which I want to keep so subsections are numbered like .1 .2 .3 and so on. –  slezadav Oct 30 '12 at 14:30
See edit - I thought of that right after I hit save :) –  Zack Oct 30 '12 at 14:30
Great, exactly what I was looking for. Will accept ASAP. Thanks a lot ! –  slezadav Oct 30 '12 at 14:31
Don't do this; there's most likely a package for that. –  Martin Schröder Nov 1 '12 at 13:37

Redefining \thesection is not sufficient. This will do better: the section title will be aligned to the left margin and not indented; in the table of contents, the section title will appear horizontally aligned to the chapter titles.

\documentclass{book}

\renewcommand{\thesection}{}
\renewcommand{\thesubsection}{\arabic{section}.\arabic{subsection}}
\makeatletter
\let\sectionignore\@gobbletwo
\let\latex@numberline\numberline
\def\numberline#1{\if\relax#1\relax\else\latex@numberline{#1}\fi}
\makeatother

\begin{document}
\frontmatter
\tableofcontents
\mainmatter
\chapter{Title}
\section{Xyz}
\subsection{Here we are}
\end{document}


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