I'm trying to make a simple Hello, World example for ConTeXt. The file itself works, but I can't manage to instruct arara to compile it with texexec.

% arara: context
Hello, World!

Neither of the rules context or texexec exist in the search path, but I can't imagine there is no rule for ConTeXt. (The absence of one though will make for a nice arara-'Hello World'.)

  • AFAIK there is no context rule. But it's not too hard to write one... it added one to my personal rules a few weeks ago
    – cgnieder
    Feb 20, 2014 at 18:14
  • looking in /usr/local/texlive/2013/texmf-dist/scripts/arara/rules, it doesn't appear that one exists. If you (or whoever) make(s) it, you should submit a pull request to the project on github. Constructing a simple rule should be straight forward enough- I would do it, but I don't know any of the options that it would need
    – cmhughes
    Feb 22, 2014 at 4:54
  • 2
    What is the advantage of having an arara rule for context? Unlike LaTeX, context is a wrapper around a lua script that runs the context format as many times as need. The context script runs bibtex as well. Index sorting, etc are handled natively by the script.
    – Aditya
    Feb 27, 2014 at 1:31
  • @Aditya Not too familiar with ConTeXt—definitely didn't know that! I think the proper answer to this question is pretty apparent at this point. Since you have a reason as to why it's unnecessary, would you mind posting this as an answer? :) Feb 27, 2014 at 3:32
  • @SeanAllred: Done
    – Aditya
    Feb 27, 2014 at 17:20

2 Answers 2


LaTeX compiation tools such arara, latexmk, rubber, etc are not needed for ConTeXt.

In LaTeX, the basic commands such as latex, pdflatex, luatatex just run the underlying TeX engine with LaTeX format pre-loaded. Features such as bibliography, index, glossary, etc are handled by external tools, and it is the responsibility of the user to run these tools. Furthermore, it is up to the user to run LaTeX appropriate number of times to get the cross-references etc right.

In contrast, in ConTeXt the basic commands context and texexec are wrappers around scripts written in lua and ruby respectively that take care of everything. Sorting of indexes and glossaries are handled the ConTeXt format, and the wrapper scripts run bibtex if needed and also compile the file as many times as needed.

Coming back to the question at hand, there is no need for a context rule for arara.

  • /asking as someone who doesn't know much about ConTeXt/ but context does have options, doesn't it? or does a user only ever need to run context myfile without any other options? if it does take options, then it seems like an arara rule may well be appropriate
    – cmhughes
    Feb 28, 2014 at 23:19
  • You can specify context options in the tex file anyways. I'll update my answer when I am on a computer
    – Aditya
    Mar 1, 2014 at 16:36
  • Nine years on, and no answer. I have posted another question about this. I am using Arara with shortcut keys and, rather than having to mouse-click through drop-down menus to get the appropriate compiler for ConTeXt, I'd like to use Arara as the default handler of the compilation steps.
    – Birdman
    Mar 17 at 21:40

If you are running arara version 5.1.0 or later, you can use arara's integrated context rule (see the CHANGELOG and the manual). For most files, it's as easy as putting % arara: context at the top of your file.

I also disagree with Aditya's statement

Coming back to the question at hand, there is no need for a context rule for arara.

because the nice thing about this rule (and why it was added in the first place) is that you can run arara on each and every TeX document you may have, be it LaTeX or ConTeXt, therefore eliminating the need to branch your compilation flow if you have a repository of a mix of LaTeX and ConTeXt documents.

However, the other points are perfectly valid, if you don't need the arara indirection for a unified compilation flow, calling the context wrapper is the way to go.

  • Can I ask for an arara rule for pandoc so that I can run all my tex and markdown files using arara? [Of course, this is a comment made in jest :-) but ... ]
    – Aditya
    Mar 31 at 3:44

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