I am using the texlive distribution on Ubuntu 14.04 and use the Texmaker IDE.

I implement latex using the quickstart function configured to

pdflatex -> bibtex -> pdflatex -> pdflatex -> View pdf

I have recently found that some of my documents start throwing up a lot of

"! Undefined control sequence.<argument> ..." 

type errors. There is no reason for this to be occurring as far as I can see as I did not change anything significantly and it worked before.

I solved the problem simply by copy/pasting the code into a new file with a new name.

However I am curious why the errors occurred and how I can prevent this occurring in the future?

Any ideas?

  • May be residual auxiliar files?
    – Manuel
    May 13, 2014 at 23:47
  • It appears to be so. If I delete all the auxiliary files it works. But why did the errors appear in the first place. I had run latex on the document innumerable times and it worked fine with each time the auxiliary files being overwritten. Why did it suddenly stop working?
    – G_T
    May 13, 2014 at 23:53
  • Did you delete also the temp files generated by bibtex?
    – Sigur
    May 14, 2014 at 1:15
  • Do you mean the .bbl file and the .blg files? If so, yes.
    – G_T
    May 14, 2014 at 1:26


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