I try using xelatex to produce a record of all opened files:

\begin{document} X \end{document}

But the output is the following:

PWD /home/jcdubacq/Documents/activites/compile-latex/tests
INPUT /etc/texmf/web2c/texmf.cnf
INPUT /usr/share/texlive/texmf/web2c/texmf.cnf
INPUT /var/lib/texmf/web2c/xetex/xelatex.fmt
INPUT a.tex
OUTPUT a.log
INPUT /usr/share/texlive/texmf-dist/tex/latex/base/minimal.cls
INPUT /usr/share/texlive/texmf-dist/tex/latex/base/minimal.cls
INPUT a.aux
INPUT a.aux
OUTPUT a.aux
INPUT a.aux

See? No a.pdf OUTPUT. And if I try using fonts, nothing either about these fonts (using the wikipedia example for xetex, no match for anything related to fonts appears, even though I expect the program to read something about Libertine fonts).

In xdv mode, the OUTPUT a.xdv line is present, but that does not help (I want to know all files used by the pdf production, and strace is available only for Linux ; I am targetting OSX, too).

Is that a bug? A feature? Am I alone in the universe (to experience this)?


  • 2
    XeTeX always produces a xdv file: PDF output relies on a driver, almost always xdvipdfmx nowadays.
    – Joseph Wright
    Jul 27, 2013 at 21:15
  • Correct, a strace just told me that. My previous runs, I did not use the -f and missed the fork (clone system call) to launch sh -c xdvipdfmx. I guess what I miss is a -recorder option for xdvipdfmx (and all the dvi family, for what I am doing). Jul 27, 2013 at 21:25
  • However, in my TeXlive, the xdv file is not written on disk (it is passed through pipe, if I am not mistaken). Jul 27, 2013 at 21:31

1 Answer 1


The XDV to PDF conversion is done by xdvipdfmx, which doesn't understand -recorder, unfortunately. It could be a good addition, but presently it doesn't do it.

With a Unix system and a Bash shell you can do

xelatex -recorder -output-driver='xdvipdfmx -vv >> dubac.fls 2>&1' dubac

The output .fls file is

PWD <omitted>
INPUT /usr/local/texlive/2013/texmf.cnf
INPUT /usr/local/texlive/2013/texmf-dist/web2c/texmf.cnf
INPUT /usr/local/texlive/2013/texmf-var/web2c/xetex/xelatex.fmt
INPUT dubac.tex
OUTPUT dubac.log
INPUT /usr/local/texlive/2013/texmf-dist/tex/latex/base/minimal.cls
INPUT /usr/local/texlive/2013/texmf-dist/tex/latex/base/minimal.cls
INPUT dubac.aux
INPUT dubac.aux
OUTPUT dubac.aux
INPUT dubac.aux
<FONTMAP:pdftex.map><FONTMAP:kanjix.map><FONTMAP:ckx.map>No dvi filename specified, reading standard input.
DVI Comment:  XeTeX output 2013.07.27:2327
stdin -> dubac.pdf
<AGL:texglyphlist.txt><AGL:pdfglyphlist.txt><AGL:glyphlist.txt>[1<[email protected](TFM:cmr10[/usr/local/texlive/2013/texmf-dist/fonts/tfm/public/cm/cmr10.tfm])
fontmap: cmr10 -> cmr10.pfb

pdf_font>> Simple font "cmr10.pfb" enc_id=<builtin,-1> opened at font_id=<cmr10,0>.
>](cmr10.pfb[CMR10][built-in][Type1][2 glyphs][467 bytes])
Compression saved 193 bytes
1446 bytes written
  • Good idea to modify the verbosity of xdvipdfmx. The output format is a bit difficult to parse, but it looks largely feasible. Thanks! Jul 27, 2013 at 22:06
  • @Jean-ChristopheDubacq Maybe using only -v instead of -vv can be better.
    – egreg
    Jul 27, 2013 at 22:25

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