Suddenly, doc won't complie

Steve Litt slitt at
Thu Oct 10 19:06:42 UTC 2019

On Wed, 9 Oct 2019 15:52:50 -0700 (PDT)
Rich Shepard <rshepard at> wrote:

> I changed the name of the .lyx document (on the command line, not
> within lyx), opened it in lyx and compiled it using pdflinux.
> Seeing that the figures (set at 100% text width) took up too much
> room on the pages and disrupted the text flow, I started changing the
> widths to 75% text width. Now when I try to compile it with ctrl-x h
> it fails with a bunch of error messages (see attached screenshot.)
> These look like they're in the bibliography, but clicking on each one
> highlights various lines of text in the document that have nothing to
> do with what's displayed in the lower window. The bibliography
> entries were inserted by kbibtex and there was no problem producing a
> .pdf file before I started to change the figure sizes.
> All ideas welcome,

I'm glad all ideas are welcome, because this one is probably not what
you had in mind...

For all my significant documents, rather than letting LyX compile them,
I use a shellscript that calls pdflatex (or lualatex) and runs all the
conversion programs and index programs and bibliography programs etc.
That way, if something in my LyX configuration changes, it won't
scuttle my document production, which of course is important when you
sell personalized eBooks.

Shellscripts are much easier to debug too: They're not a single black
box. And they survive LyX upgrades much better than a LyX

The biggest problems I face are that every year a new TexLive comes
out, automatically, and causes my books not to compile. So once a year
I spend six hours up close and personal with tlmgr, hunting down
missing fonts and installing them, and maybe doing a few other things.

LyX' built in compile facility is great for short docs you seldom need
to compile, but if you have something big that requires recompilation
from time to time, a shellscript is the way to go.


Steve Litt
Author: The Key to Everyday Excellence

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