When I open a PDF file and I want to know if it was created via LaTeX or XeLaTeX or LuaLaTeX and so on, because some PDF files were converted from Word. How can I do that?

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    Have you checked the pdf properties? – daleif Jun 27 '19 at 11:40
  • @daleif, Yes I did – Ali Jun 27 '19 at 11:41
  • And what do you get? I know at least pdflatex is saying it is produced by pdftex, and it is not used by the others – daleif Jun 27 '19 at 11:42
  • As long as I know nothing which indicate the source of the file if it is converted from Word or others – Ali Jun 27 '19 at 11:44
  • Most converters mention the producer in the pdf properties. Sorry cannot help you more that that, you probably need to give us more information on what exactly you are asking – daleif Jun 27 '19 at 11:46

For example, pdfinfo (part of poppler) can show you Creator and Producer. I get the following, for a PDF file created by XeTeX (with the xelatex command):

Creator:         XeTeX output 2019.06.27:0505
Producer:       xdvipdfmx (20180217)

Created by LuaTeX (with lualatex):

Creator:        TeX
Producer:       LuaTeX-1.07.0

Created by pdfTeX, with latex followed by dvipdfm:

Creator:         TeX output 2019.06.27:0505
Producer:       dvipdfmx (20180217)

For a file created by TextEdit on macOS with “Export as PDF”:

Creator:        TextEdit
Producer:       macOS Version 10.14.5 (Build 18F132) Quartz PDFContext

For a file created with my browser's Print as PDF:

Creator:        Mozilla/5.0 (Macintosh; Intel Mac OS X 10_14_5) AppleWebKit/537.36 (KHTML, like Gecko) Chrome/75.0.3770.100 Safari/537.36
Producer:       Skia/PDF m75


You don't have to use pdfinfo; other tools that show PDF properties should show the same data.

Also note that these are only the defaults; if someone wishes and knows how, they can set the properties to anything.

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  • You can also just open the PDF in a text viewer, e.g. Notepad++, and then search for latex. You will see something like /Author()/Title()/Subject()/Creator(LaTeX with hyperref)/Producer(pdfTeX-1.40.19)/Keywords(). – ComFreek Jun 28 '19 at 7:49

On the Mac, you can click on your pdf file in the Finder, and then do "Get Info" from the Finder menu (which is also the Command + "i" key).

You will see in the Get Info if it is created by pdfTeX. For instance, I just checked such a file, and it says:

Content Creator: TeX Encoding software: pdfTeX-1.40.20

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Defaults for MiKTeX all outputs are PDF Version: 1.5

Created by PdfLaTeX:

Application: TeX  
PDF Producer: MiKTeX pdfTeX-1.40.20

Created by LuaLaTeX:

Application: TeX
PDF Producer: LuaTeX-1.10.0

Created by XeLaTeX

Application:  XeTeX output 2019...  
PDF Producer: MiKTeX-xdvipdfmx (20190503)
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