After getting the suggestion to use the layouts package for visual debugging of lengths, I came up with the following example, which I compile with xelatex test.tex:







\pdfpagewidth=148mm \pdfpageheight=210mm % for PDF output
\paperwidth=148mm \paperheight=210mm     % for TikZ

\begin{tikzpicture}[overlay,remember picture,inner sep=0pt,yscale=-1,outer sep=0pt,anchor=north west]

  \begin{scope}[shift={(-\oddsidemargin,-\topmargin-\headheight-\headsep-\marginparsep)}]% layer1

%   \path[anchor=north west] (0,0) node[below right] (dbg) {% this goes to (0,0) but after margin
  \path[anchor=north west] (current page.north west) node[below right] (dbg) {%
        \setlayoutscale{1.0} %
        \drawdimensionstrue %
        \pagedesign %




This is what I get as output (upper/left/right edges of image correlate to corresponding edges of the pdf page):

test.pdf output


Notably, all lengths being read are reported as zeroes; I was otherwise hoping that I could force the layouts page diagram to be scaled to one, and overlaid over the current page using a tikz node - but that apparently fails.

Is it possible at all that I get a layouts page diagram overlaid over a page as I intended to? If so, how?

Many thanks in advance for any answers,


I guess it's a bug of layouts. The current maintainer of the package is Will Robertson. I think you should send a bug report.

At the moment the following patch using etoolbox seems to work:

  {\typeout{^^J*******\string\drawpage fixed*******^^J}}%
  {\typeout{^^J*******\string\drawpage not fixed*******^^J}}


Of course you must setup the tikz environment by your self ;-)

  • Many thanks for that, @MarcoDaniel - your fix works great, also for my example above (to my surprise, with \setlayoutscale{0.68}, I get the page edges on layout to scale almost to pdf page edges). I've seen @WillRobertson around this site, so hopefully tex.se will issue a bump - else, by looking at CTAN webpage, I should email to submit a bug. Many thanks again - cheers! – sdaau May 13 '12 at 11:39

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