I have just recompiled with pdflatex a presentation and the text in the first column of one of the slides does not appear in the pdf. The source code is exactly the same that last year worked ok.

I have reproduced the problem in a MWE.

  • Removing the title page makes the text of the first column appear
  • Putting the text of the column as items (itemize environment) also makes the text appear
  • Removing Madrid theme also makes the text visible


\title{Beamer columns problem}



\begin{frame}{Columns problem}


Column 1 text does not appear unless in itemize environment 
or removing titlepage


Column 2


\begin{frame}{Columns ok}


Column 1


Column 2



What is more strange, diffpdf did not mark any difference for the lost text.

Any idea what is happening?

I am using (extract from the pdflatex log):

This is pdfTeX, Version 3.14159265-2.6-1.40.17 (TeX Live 2016/Debian) (preloaded format=pdflatex 2017.12.6)  23 FEB 2018 15:18
entering extended mode
 restricted \write18 enabled.
 %&-line parsing enabled.
LaTeX2e <2017/01/01> patch level 3
Babel <3.9r> and hyphenation patterns for 6 language(s) loaded.
Document Class: beamer 2017/01/22 v3.40 A class for typesetting presentations

\listfiles output from log:

File List beamer.cls 2017/01/22 v3.40 A class for typesetting presentations etoolbox.sty 2017/01/02 v2.4 e-TeX tools for LaTeX (JAW) beamerbasemodes.sty beamerbasedecode.sty ifpdf.sty
2016/05/14 v3.1 Provides the ifpdf switch beamerbaseoptions.sty
keyval.sty 2014/10/28 v1.15 key=value parser (DPC) geometry.sty
2010/09/12 v5.6 Page Geometry ifvtex.sty 2016/05/16 v1.6 Detect VTeX and its facilities (HO) ifxetex.sty 2010/09/12 v0.6 Provides ifxetex conditional size11.clo 2014/09/29 v1.4h Standard LaTeX file (size option) pgfcore.sty 2010/04/11 v3.0.1a (rcs-revision 1.7) graphicx.sty 2014/10/28 v1.0g Enhanced LaTeX Graphics (DPC,SPQR) graphics.sty 2016/10/09 v1.0u Standard LaTeX Graphics (DPC,SPQR) trig.sty 2016/01/03 v1.10 sin cos tan (DPC) graphics.cfg 2016/06/04 v1.11 sample graphics configuration pdftex.def
2017/01/12 v0.06k Graphics/color for pdfTeX infwarerr.sty
2016/05/16 v1.4 Providing info/warning/error messages (HO) ltxcmds.sty 2016/05/16 v1.23 LaTeX kernel commands for general use (HO) pgfsys.sty 2014/07/09 v3.0.1a (rcs-revision 1.48)
pgfrcs.sty 2015/08/07 v3.0.1a (rcs-revision 1.31) everyshi.sty
2001/05/15 v3.00 EveryShipout Package (MS) pgfrcs.code.tex
pgfsys.code.tex pgfsyssoftpath.code.tex 2013/09/09 (rcs-revision 1.9) pgfsysprotocol.code.tex 2006/10/16 (rcs-revision 1.4) xcolor.sty 2016/05/11 v2.12 LaTeX color extensions (UK)
color.cfg 2016/01/02 v1.6 sample color configuration pgfcore.code.tex xxcolor.sty 2003/10/24 ver 0.1 atbegshi.sty
2016/06/09 v1.18 At begin shipout hook (HO) hyperref.sty 2016/06/24 v6.83q Hypertext links for LaTeX hobsub-hyperref.sty 2016/05/16 v1.14 Bundle oberdiek, subset hyperref (HO) hobsub-generic.sty
2016/05/16 v1.14 Bundle oberdiek, subset generic (HO) hobsub.sty
2016/05/16 v1.14 Construct package bundles (HO) ifluatex.sty
2016/05/16 v1.4 Provides the ifluatex switch (HO) intcalc.sty
2016/05/16 v1.2 Expandable calculations with integers (HO) etexcmds.sty 2016/05/16 v1.6 Avoid name clashes with e-TeX commands (HO) kvsetkeys.sty 2016/05/16 v1.17 Key value parser (HO) kvdefinekeys.sty 2016/05/16 v1.4 Define keys (HO) pdftexcmds.sty
2016/05/21 v0.22 Utility functions of pdfTeX for LuaTeX (HO) pdfescape.sty 2016/05/16 v1.14 Implements pdfTeX's escape features (HO) bigintcalc.sty 2016/05/16 v1.4 Expandable calculations on big integers (HO) bitset.sty 2016/05/16 v1.2 Handle bit-vector datatype (HO) uniquecounter.sty 2016/05/16 v1.3 Provide unlimited unique counter (HO) letltxmacro.sty 2016/05/16 v1.5 Let assignment for LaTeX macros (HO) hopatch.sty 2016/05/16 v1.3 Wrapper for package hooks (HO) xcolor-patch.sty 2016/05/16 xcolor patch atveryend.sty 2016/05/16 v1.9 Hooks at the very end of document (HO) refcount.sty 2016/05/16 v3.5 Data extraction from label references (HO) hycolor.sty 2016/05/16 v1.8 Color options for hyperref/bookmark (HO) auxhook.sty 2016/05/16 v1.4 Hooks for auxiliary files (HO) kvoptions.sty 2016/05/16 v3.12 Key value format for package options (HO) pd1enc.def 2016/06/24 v6.83q Hyperref: PDFDocEncoding definition (HO) hyperref.cfg 2002/06/06 v1.2 hyperref configuration of TeXLive url.sty 2013/09/16 ver 3.4 Verb mode for urls, etc. hpdftex.def 2016/06/24 v6.83q Hyperref driver for pdfTeX rerunfilecheck.sty 2016/05/16 v1.8 Rerun checks for auxiliary files (HO) beamerbaserequires.sty beamerbasecompatibility.sty
beamerbasefont.sty amssymb.sty 2013/01/14 v3.01 AMS font symbols amsfonts.sty 2013/01/14 v3.01 Basic AMSFonts support beamerbasetranslator.sty translator.sty 2010/06/12 ver 1.10 translator-language-mappings.tex beamerbasemisc.sty
beamerbasetwoscreens.sty beamerbaseoverlay.sty
beamerbasetitle.sty beamerbasesection.sty beamerbaseframe.sty beamerbaseverbatim.sty beamerbaseframesize.sty
beamerbaseframecomponents.sty beamerbasecolor.sty
beamerbasenotes.sty beamerbasetoc.sty beamerbasetemplates.sty beamerbaseauxtemplates.sty beamerbaseboxes.sty
beamerbaselocalstructure.sty enumerate.sty 2015/07/23 v3.00 enumerate extensions (DPC) beamerbasenavigation.sty
beamerbasetheorems.sty amsmath.sty 2016/11/05 v2.16a AMS math features amstext.sty 2000/06/29 v2.01 AMS text amsgen.sty
1999/11/30 v2.0 generic functions amsbsy.sty 1999/11/29 v1.2d Bold Symbols amsopn.sty 2016/03/08 v2.02 operator names
amsthm.sty 2015/03/04 v2.20.2 beamerbasethemes.sty
beamerthemedefault.sty beamerfontthemedefault.sty
beamercolorthemedefault.sty beamerinnerthemedefault.sty
beamerouterthemedefault.sty beamerthemeMadrid.sty
beamercolorthemewhale.sty beamercolorthemeorchid.sty
beamerinnerthemerounded.sty beamerouterthemeinfolines.sty
supp-pdf.mkii epstopdf-base.sty 2016/05/15 v2.6 Base part for package epstopdf grfext.sty 2016/05/16 v1.2 Manage graphics extensions (HO) epstopdf-sys.cfg 2010/07/13 v1.3 Configuration of (r)epstopdf for TeX Live nameref.sty 2016/05/21 v2.44 Cross-referencing by name of section gettitlestring.sty 2016/05/16 v1.5 Cleanup title references (HO) beamer-columns-test.out beamer-columns-test.out translator-basic-dictionary-English.dict
umsa.fd 2013/01/14 v3.01 AMS symbols A umsb.fd 2013/01/14 v3.01 AMS symbols B ***********

Package atveryend Info: Executing hook AtEndAfterFileList' on input line 41. Package rerunfilecheck Info: Filebeamer-columns-test.out' has not changed. (rerunfilecheck) Checksum: D41D8CD98F00B204E9800998ECF8427E;0.

LaTeX Font Warning: Size substitutions with differences (Font)
up to 1.0pt have occurred.

) Here is how much of TeX's memory you used: 16852 strings out of 494883 321780 string characters out of 6179094 388889 words of memory out of 5000000 19761 multiletter control sequences out of 15000+600000 10258 words of font info for 38 fonts, out of 8000000 for 9000 40 hyphenation exceptions out of 8191 48i,16n,51p,785b,557s stack positions out of 5000i,500n,10000p,200000b,80000s Output written on beamer-columns-test.pdf (3 pages, 36095 bytes). PDF statistics: 117 PDF objects out of 1000 (max. 8388607) 98 compressed objects within 1 object stream 7 named destinations out of 1000 (max. 500000) 61 words of extra memory for PDF output out of 10000 (max. 10000000)

Complete log in pastebin: https://pastebin.com/4Kvm2Ezg

  • I can't reproduce the behaviour on my machine. Which version of beamer does run on your installation?
    – Skillmon
    Commented Feb 23, 2018 at 14:14
  • me either can't reproduce your problem. tested with recent beamer (3.50)
    – Zarko
    Commented Feb 23, 2018 at 14:17
  • I am editing the question to add version info. From the log: This is pdfTeX, Version 3.14159265-2.6-1.40.17 (TeX Live 2016/Debian) (preloaded format=pdflatex 2017.12.6) 23 FEB 2018 15:18 entering extended mode restricted \write18 enabled. %&-line parsing enabled. **beamer-columns-test.tex (./beamer-columns-test.tex LaTeX2e <2017/01/01> patch level 3 Babel <3.9r> and hyphenation patterns for 6 language(s) loaded. (/usr/share/texlive/texmf-dist/tex/latex/beamer/beamer.cls Document Class: beamer 2017/01/22 v3.40 A class for typesetting presentations
    – airos
    Commented Feb 23, 2018 at 14:20
  • Can you please show the complete .log file? Commented Feb 23, 2018 at 14:21
  • 1
    And perhaps include a \listfiles in your file?
    – Skillmon
    Commented Feb 23, 2018 at 14:24

2 Answers 2


This bug has been fixed in beamer v.3.41

In case you cannot update, place https://raw.githubusercontent.com/josephwright/beamer/master/base/beamerbasecolor.sty in your working directory


If placing the file in your directory results in error messages (as it does for me), you can also just write the following line before the text that is not visible:

\setbeamercolor{normal text}{fg=black}\usebeamercolor*{normal text}

It will change the font color to black, since the reason that you don't see the text is probably that your heading color is white, and the text of the first column is shown in the heading color.

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