I am on Windows 7 Professional (64 bit) and would like to be able to execute one command to completely compile a PDF from source .tex files (including all required runs to get the table of contents, bibliography, etc).

I've seen LatexMake and Rubber. When I run LatexMake on Windows using Make for Windows I get the following error:

'[' is not recognized as an internal or external command,
operable program or batch file.
A subdirectory or file . already exists.
Error occurred while processing: ..
make: *** [.] Error 1

I wanted to try Rubber but it has *nix-specific setup instructions. Perhaps somebody can give me some pointers on getting this running on Windows? Searching Google for combinations of Windows, Rubber, and LaTeX has proven ineffective, for obvious reaons (need a latex rubber seal on your windows?). Also, how would I use Rubber to make PDFs? According to the LaTeXMake page generating pdfs with Rubber is an "extra feature."

I would also like to build the same documents using the same solution on *nix systems if at all possible so I can leave the makefiles (or whatever ends up being used) in the source repository.

In the worst-case scenario, I can try using cygwin.

  • 3
    As you use MiKTeX on Windows, have you looked at texify?
    – uli
    Dec 14, 2011 at 8:30
  • 1
    link to MiKTeX texify documentation
    – matth
    Dec 14, 2011 at 8:51
  • Is LatexMake the same as Latexmk? Latexmk also comes with MiKTeX
    – matth
    Dec 14, 2011 at 8:53
  • 1
    If you really want a unix like environment at Windows instead of using a Windows tool, you may try UnxUtils or MSYS. Dec 14, 2011 at 9:35
  • 3
    There's also arara which is a Java application so it should work on both windows and *nix Feb 1, 2013 at 11:35

5 Answers 5


I'd go with latexmk -- versions exist for at least the following that I can verify:

  • Ubuntu and Debian. It's not part of their old TeX Live installations, but packaged separately
  • TeX Live 2011 on Windows (includes version 4.26)
  • MacTeX 2010 (it's in the disabled engines folder for TeXshop by default, but can be easily enabled)

It may be available on other distributions as well. But in any case, I was incredibly happy to see it available by default on TeX Live for Windows. And you're not tied to a particular editor. I'm hoping to deploy a TeXnicCenter profile for our users using latexmk in the next few weeks.

EDIT: one other nice thing with latexmk is that I can automatically have it build a nomenclature or list of symbols for thesis/dissertation purposes. All I have to do is provide a .latexmkrc with the following lines:

push @cus_dep_list, "nlo nls 0 nlo2nls"; # nomenclature
sub nlo2nls { system("makeindex $_[0].nlo -s nomencl.ist -o $_[0].nls -t $_[0].nlg"); }

which basically says, "if you see a .nlo file, use this makeindex command to convert it into a .nls file".

  • On MiKTeX 2.9 latexmk is also included and works nicely.
    – Alexander
    Feb 1, 2013 at 19:22

As suggested in the comments (but not in an answer yet) I checked out texify. Running the following command does everything I need:

texify -p input.tex

Thanks, everybody!

  • 1
    texify is not cross-platform as far as I know. It's not included in TeXLive and appears to be MiKTeX only. See this question.
    – qubyte
    Dec 15, 2011 at 1:31

I suggest you take a look at the Texmaker editor.

It is working on Linux, MacOS X and Windows. You can define quick compilation command to do pdflatex + bibtex + pdflatex + pdflatex in one sweep, hence producing directly your PDF with bibliography etc... You can add a makeindex pass as well if you have an index.

This is the tool I am using, and I am pretty sure many other people can vouch for other tools providing the same functionnalities.

Still, the very interesting point for Texmaker is that this is a cross-platform editor.

  • You can't always point and click on a button. Maybe the OP wants a document to be automatically generated from raw data and built every hour. Feb 1, 2013 at 11:36

I'm using RTextDoc LaTeX editor. It is cross platform (since Java)


Regarding Rubber: You're right that it's difficult to find information on it because its clever name makes googling difficult. It does install in Cygwin with no trouble. Just download the ZIP or tar.gz file for the source from https://launchpad.net/rubber/ then follow the instructions in the README.

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