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Isolating LaTeX errors
Version: 3.x, 4.x, 5.x - Scientific WorkPlace & Scientific
If LaTeX can't properly compile your document, you must try to isolate and
resolve the error. Then you may need to
repair your document. A thorough knowledge of TeX and
LaTeX is invaluable in this process.
After LaTeX processing stops, open the .log file to examine the error
messages. Compare the .log file to the .tex file. Pay particular attention to
any errors that occur in the preamble. Look for
Incorrect definition statements.
Statements that hide environment changes.
Misspelled commands or environment names.
Improperly matched or missing braces or delimiters.
Improperly using a character with a special meaning in TeX.
Missing \end commands.
Missing command arguments.
If the error isn't immediately obvious, you may be able to isolate it with
Make a copy of the .tex file.
Open the .tex file with an ASCII editor and scroll to the area in which the
Place a percent sign at the beginning of each line to comment out a portion of
Use the TrueTeX Formatter to compile the document:
From the SWP or SW submenu on the Windows Programs list, choose the TrueTeX
Select the file and choose OK.
Repeat steps 3 and 4, commenting out larger and larger portions of the
document, until LaTeX handles the document correctly.
The area that is commented out contains the error.
Beginning from the top of the commented portion of the file, remove the
percent signs from several lines of the file.
Recompile the document.
Repeat steps 6 and 7 until you isolate the cause of the failure.
Correct the mistake.
Added 04/05/02; revised 08/22/05
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