Is there any tool that can help in comparing two log files from different runs?

I am interested in showing things like:

  1. Different versions of the loaded packages
  2. Change in the size of overfull boxes
  3. Engine version
  4. Other things that may help diagnose errors that show in one run but not the other
  • You can use editor pspad to open one file and compare a second file with it (menu Tools). You can use a host of Linux commands to isolate specific lines or terms.
    – MS-SPO
    Commented Nov 23, 2023 at 9:13

1 Answer 1


The entire LaTeX release regression suite is based on comparing normalised log files, it is available on CTAN and TeX Live separately from the LaTeX sources as l3build.

  • Thanks for the point. I read the documentation but I can not figure out how to use it to compare two log files. Can you provide a small example to start with?
    – TeXtnik
    Commented Dec 9, 2016 at 10:44
  • @TeXtnik l3build doesn't use 'raw' .log file but rather specially set up ones (which are normalised). tex.stackexchange.com/questions/329743/… describes some of this: would you like a 'complete' answer here using l3build? (I'm not sure it's exactly what you are after!)
    – Joseph Wright
    Commented Dec 9, 2016 at 15:05

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