I like very much the 'side-by-side' code examples in the TikZ/PGF manual...

enter image description here

... and I would like to use the same thing in a manual I'm writing. I have found the source code for the codeexample environment that the TikZ/PGF manual uses for this purpose (specifically, it's located at /usr/local/texlive/2012/texmf-dist/doc/generic/pgf/macros/pgfmanual-en-macros.tex).

My (probably rather basic) question is: how can I use the same codeexample environment in my own documents? I ask because I tried compiling the example in the related question below, but the file couldn't be found.


Here, I use tcolorbox to resemble the visual appearance of the TikZ examples. The mandatory parameter of my example environment sidebyside is the width of the picture.

Update: The first two examples use an automated invisible tikzpicture environment to display only a code snippet. The third example uses and displays the tikzpicture environment deliberately.



  fillbackground/.style={before lower pre={%
  \tikzset{every picture/.style={execute at end picture={\begin{pgfonlayer}{background}
    ([xshift=-1mm,yshift=-1mm]current bounding box.south west) rectangle
    ([xshift=1mm,yshift=1mm]current bounding box.north east);
  explicitpicture/.style={before lower=\begin{center},after lower=\end{center},fillbackground}}

  enhanced,frame hidden,
  listing style=example,
  sidebyside,text and listing,text outside listing,sidebyside gap=2mm,
  lefthand width=#2,tikz lower,fillbackground,


\begin{sidebyside}[before lower app={\path[] (-2,-0.5) rectangle (2,0.5);}]{4.2cm}
  {1cm}{rgb(0cm)=(1,0,0); color(2cm)=(green); color(4cm)=(blue)}

\node {root}
  child {node {left}}
  child {node {right}
    child {node {child}}
    child {node {child}}

\begin{tikzpicture}[line width=20pt]
  \useasboundingbox (0,-1.5) rectangle (3.5,1.5);
  \draw[red] (0,0) -- (3,0);
  \draw[gray,->] (0,0) -- (3,0);


enter image description here

  • Nice! Is it possible to also highlight the backslash symbol as well? – Herr K. Nov 18 '13 at 18:58
  • 1
    @KevinC Yes. Here, the listings package does the formatting job in the background. The settings are made by \lstdefinestyle in my example code. I edited the example to add the backslash highlighting. I also changed the third example to display an explicit tikzpicture environment as in the TikZ manual. – Thomas F. Sturm Nov 19 '13 at 12:37

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