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Author: Norbert Preining
License: GPLv2

Convert Japanese TeX documents to pdf


Main purpose of the script is easy support of Japanese typesetting engines in TeXworks. As TeXworks typesetting setup does not allow for multistep processing, this script runs one of the ptex based programs (ptex, uptex, eptex, euptex, platex, uplatex) followed by dvipdfmx.


[texlua] ptex2pdf[.lua] { option | basename[.tex] } ...
options: -v     version
         -h     help
         -help  print full help (installation, TeXworks setup)
         -e     use eptex class of programs
         -u     use uptex class of programs
         -l     use latex based formats
         -ld    use latex-dev based formats
         -s     stop at dvi
         -i     retain intermediate files
         -ot '<opts>'   extra options for TeX
         -od '<opts>'   extra options for dvipdfmx
         -output-directory '<dir>'   directory for created files


Copy the file ptex2pdf.lua into a directory where scripts are found, that is for example


(where TLROOT is for example the root of your TeX Live installation)


create a link in one of the bin dirs to the above file, in the TeX Live case:

TLROOT/bin/ARCH/ptex2pdf -> ../../texmf-dist/scripts/ptex2pdf/ptex2pdf.lua


create a copy of runscript.exe as ptex2pdf.exe, in the TeX Live case:

copy TLROOT/bin/win32/runscript.exe TLROOT/bin/win32/ptex2pdf.exe

TeXworks setup

Under Preferences > Typesetting add new entries, for example:

for ptex files:

Setting Value
Name: pTeX (ptex2pdf)
Program: ptex2pdf
Arguments: -ot

for platex files:

Setting Value
Name: pLaTeX (ptex2pdf)
Program: ptex2pdf
Arguments: -l

for uptex files:

Setting Value
Name: upTeX (ptex2pdf)
Program: ptex2pdf
Arguments: -u

for uplatex files:

Setting Value
Name: upLaTeX (ptex2pdf)
Program: ptex2pdf
Arguments: -l

If you need special kanji encodings for one of these programs, add the respective -kanji option with the $synctexoption. Example:

for platex files in SJIS encoding:

Setting Value
Name: pLaTeX/SJIS (ptex2pdf)
Program: ptex2pdf
Arguments: -l
-kanji=sjis $synctexoption

Development place


  • version 0.1 2013-03-08 NP
    Initial release on blog
  • version 0.2 2013-03-10 NP
    import into git repository
    support passing options on to tex and dvipdfm
    add README with TeXworks config options
  • version 0.3 2013-05-01 NP
    include the readme in the lua code
    fix program name for -e -u
  • version 0.4 2013-05-07 NP
    quote the filename with ", so that special chars do survive
    add an example for TeXworks for files with different kanji encoding
  • version 0.5 2014-11-05 NP
    on Windows: set command_line_encoding to utf8 when running uptex
    (patch by Akira Kakuto)
  • version 0.6 2015-03-08 NP
    cygwin didn't like the (accidentally inserted) spaces after the
    texlua in the shebang line, and stopped working with
    "no such program: "texlua " ..."
  • version 0.7 2015-04-29
    move to github as gitorious will be closed, adapt help output
    to generate github flavored markdown
    check for files using kpathsea instead of opening directly, to allow
    for input of files found by kpathsea (closes github issue 1)
  • version 0.8 2015-06-15
    file name checks: first search for arg as is, then try .tex and .ltx
    (closes github issue: 3)
  • version 0.9 2016-12-12
    allow for files in sub-directories
    add -output-directory option
    update copyright and development place (now in texjp)
    support 'flag=val' to specify option values
    only allow one (1) filename argument
  • version 20170603.0
    start version number in the format YYYYMMDD.0
    better support for cp932 windows filenames
    first replace all backslash chars to slash chars
  • version 20170622.0
    pass all non-optional arguments before filename to TeX engine
  • version 20180514.0
    Windows: for uptex use command_line_encoding=utf8, for all other turn it off (set to none)
  • version 20181212.0
    support directories containing dots (thanks kn1cht)
  • version 20200119.0
    check invalid PATH string beforehand on windows
  • version 20200307.0
    add -ld option to run (u)platex-dev
  • version 20200520.0
    Windows: lua mode - support non-ascii file name on recent luatex

Copyright and License

Originally based on musixtex.lua from Bob Tennent.

(c) Copyright 2016-2020 Japanese TeX Development Community
(c) Copyright 2013-2020 Norbert Preining
(c) Copyright 2012 Bob Tennent

This program is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the terms of the GNU General Public License as published by the Free Software Foundation; either version 2 of the License, or (at your option) any later version.

This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE. See the GNU General Public License for more details.

You should have received a copy of the GNU General Public License along with this program; if not, write to the Free Software Foundation, Inc., 51 Franklin Street, Fifth Floor, Boston, MA 02110-1301, USA.


Convert Japanese TeX documents to pdf







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