I am submitting a paper for a conference and it requires me to send the .tex source along with the PS and PDF files.

I have no problem generating the PDF file; I simply use the pdflatex. However, since my .tex makes use of the PNG, JPEG and PDF figures, I can't use latex + dvips to create the PS file.

How can I solve this problem? Note that converting all my figures to PS won't solve the problem, because I would need two different .tex files since the includegraphics commands would be different.

  • 8
    The \includegraphics commands don't have to be different. If you leave off the extension then it works out the best format to include. So then you can have the PS versions and the PDF ones alongside each other with latex using the PS versions and pdflatex using the PDF ones. Aug 20, 2011 at 20:46
  • Yes, that worked for me so the problem is now solved for me. The problem is that I had to manually convert all my figures to PS. I wonder if there is an easier solution for this problem. Aug 20, 2011 at 21:22
  • 3
    Are you on Linux? If so, foreach f in *.pdf; do pdftops $f; done should do the trick (though the exact syntax might be shell-specific - I use zsh). Aug 20, 2011 at 21:26

4 Answers 4


If you're using PDF pictures, you may not be able to output to PS without at some point doing a conversion. Comments on one of the other answers suggest using pdftops rather than pdf2ps, I have no personal experience. You may be able to just convert the figures, then compile with both latex/dvips and pdflatex, or it may be easier to just compile with pdflatex and then convert the final document to PS.


Here's how I solved the proposed question.

First, as Andrew Stacey noted, I don't need to have different \includegraphics commands. This can be achieved by simply leaving off the image file extension.

The next step consisted in generating EPS versions of all my figures. I did this manually, but as noted in the comments, that could've been much easier by using a script and a command line image conversion application (note that pdftops wouldn't work for JPEG or PNG images).

Finally, I generated the PS file with latex + dvips and the PDF with latexpdf. Alternatively, it would be possible to generate the PDF file with latex + dvips + ps2pdf.

Note that this approach is better than generating the PDF file and then using pdf2ps or pdftops to create the PS file. This is because pdf2ps and pdftops outputs a excessively big PS file (see Jukka comment on chl answer).

  • 1
    I think that if you use the convert command from the ImageMagic (?spelling?) package then it doesn't need to know the input format to do the conversion so would work with jpeg, png, and pdf without changing the format. Alternatively, it wouldn't be hard to write a short shell script that converted all the images using specific tools according to their type. Aug 22, 2011 at 6:36

May be there are better solutions, but this worked out well for me. If you use adobe, you can easily save the .pdf file in .ps format. This is pretty much the same way as when you save a .doc file as .pdf.


Can't you just use pdf2ps which comes with the Ghostscript Tools? (See here for an example bash script which makes use of gs directly.)

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    pdf2ps is a very bad idea; try pdftops instead. See, for example, stefaanlippens.net/pdf2ps_vs_pdftops Aug 20, 2011 at 21:17
  • The main problem that I had with pdf2ps is that the output file is huge. For example, my PDF file size was 1.2 MB while the generated PS file had more than 20 MB. Aug 20, 2011 at 21:19
  • @Alceu: Did you try pdftops? It seems to work very well, and I have used it in a similar situation. Aug 20, 2011 at 21:21
  • @Jukka (+1) Thanks. It's really faster compared to pdf2ps, but about the size I got similar results on a very basic document (pdf: 1,8M; pdf2ps: 8,6M; pdftops: 9,9M).
    – chl
    Aug 20, 2011 at 21:30
  • I don't have pdftops installed here. I think that the problem with the size of the PS file is related to conversion of fonts to bitmaps. Aug 20, 2011 at 21:40

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