The e-TEX Reference Site

Welcome to the e-TeX1 reference site: e-TeX V1.1 (the first production release) is now available for general access; please read the document describing the legal status of e-TeX before proceeding further. A brief description of the functionality provided by e-TeX may be found in the on-line Reference Manual.

The following resources are intended to be of use to e-TeX implementors, but may be of interest to anyone considering using e-TeX; they be accessed directly from the hyperlinks on this page, via ftp (, or via NFS using the pseudo-URL: nfs://

The e-TeX team recommend that e-TeX be configured such that the command by which it is invoked be the same as the default name for the format to be used. Since it is expected that most sites will choose to install e-TeX so that it can be invoked with the command "etex", we provide a source file which can be used to build the "etex" format (an analogous "elatex" source file will be provided in due course, ideally in collaboration with the LaTeX3 team). A few adjunct source files, required or optionally used by the "etex" source file, are also supplied: A reference implementation, developed by Christian Spieler for VAX/VMS and AXP/VMS, is also provided, to which Jörg Knappen has recently contributed a modified "weave" changefile and a RUNOFF file containing the source for a VMS HELP library for e-TeX: A further reference implementation (PubliC e-TeX, a.k.a. "pubtex" and "dos-tp") by Peter Breitenlohner for MS/DOS is also available: An e-TeX implementation must be validated by performing the e-TRIP test (the e-TeX equivalent of Knuth's TRIP test). The components of the e-TRIP suite are as follows: Finally we provide the definitive (Knuthian) TeX and Trip files: Any problems encountered when using e-TeX which cannot be replicated when using a TRIP-validated implementation of TeX should be reported to the e-TeX team, and accompanied by sufficient information to enable the scenario to be reproduced at another site; the exact version and implementation of e-TeX should of course be specified.

[1] The orthography of e-TEX

The e-TeX team request that wherever e-TeX is referred to in text, it be represented by the use of its (e-)TeX logo ($\varepsilon$-\TeX), by the nearest HTML equivalent (e-T<sub><big>E</big></sub>X), or if all else fails, by the simple ASCII string "e-TeX". However, bearing in mind (a)  the current ISO standard for CD-ROMs (which precludes the use of a hyphen in filenames), and (b) the problems of moving files between case-sensitive (e.g. Unix) and case-insensitive (e.g. VMS, MS/DOS) operating systems, it is strongly recommended that wherever "e-TeX" occurs in the context of a filename, logical name, DCL symbol or analogous construct it be spelled (a) without the hyphen, and (b) entirely in lower case. It is further recommended that the component "etex" of such a name be separated from any subsequent component(s) by an underscore, unless this would (in the case of a filename) cause it to exceed the MS/DOS limit of 8+3 characters in which case the underscore should be omitted. Similar considerations may also be taken into account when constructing logical names, DCL symbols, etc, although the upper bound will then be system-dependent.
Please notify any errors in this document to its creator;
Last updated: 7-JUL-1997 17:23:32 /PT.
HTML 3.2 Checked!