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Is there any way to run LaTeX without it trying to produce output, only producing an .aux file with section, equation, table, figure, references, etcetera. I understand it obviously can't produce page references.

I know about the virtues of \includeonly, externalization, etcetera; I'm not asking about anything other than the question above.

  • 2
    pdflatex knows the --draft option, which does not generate a .pdf output – user31729 Dec 27 '14 at 17:29
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    You can also add \pdfdraftmode=1 to the document (which does the same as the command line option). – Ulrike Fischer Dec 27 '14 at 17:37
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    see tex.stackexchange.com/questions/15604/… – user2478 Dec 27 '14 at 18:56
  • Thank you very much. This is actually not quite what I had in mind since it still appears to go through much of the processing and saves only about 30% off the compile time – JPi Dec 27 '14 at 20:45
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    @JPi Producing the .aux file requires typesetting the document anyway: how can the page numbers be found, otherwise? – egreg Dec 27 '14 at 23:51
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You can use the draft mode:

-draftmode
          Sets \pdfdraftmode so pdfTeX doesn't write a PDF and 
          doesn't read any included images, thus speeding up execution.

Arara also supports it, here's an example for TeXworks:

% arara: pdflatex: { draft : yes }

I use the following snippet to compile a large document with hundreds of pages and references:

%!TEX TS-program = Arara
% arara: pdflatex: { draft : yes }
% arara: pdflatex: { draft : yes }
% arara: biber
% arara: pdflatex
% arara: pdflatex
  • Thank you very much. This is actually not quite what I had in mind since it still appears to go through much of the processing and saves only about 30% off the compile time. – JPi Dec 27 '14 at 20:44

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