Re: [S] Summary: Creating postscript for LaTeX

Prof Brian Ripley (
Mon, 19 Oct 1998 10:15:52 +0100 (BST)

> Date: Mon, 19 Oct 1998 01:57:16 -0700 (PDT)
> From: John Wallace <>
> To: John Castelloe <>
> Subject: Re: [S] Summary: Creating postscript for LaTeX
> >> I forgot to mention that I am using S-Plus 4.5r2 on a Win95 PC, in case
> >> that makes a difference. (Sorry for the duplicate posting).

Side comment: almost all of the suggestions in the summary are Unix-only:
the Windows postscript() device does NOT produce valid EPS.

[John Wallace quoting John Castelloe quoting me]

> > Yes, it makes an enormous difference. I do not believe there is a
> > reliable way to create EPS files on that system. The postscript()
> > graphics driver does not generate EPS, Export Graph generates (IMHO)
> > poor-quality plots, so one is reduced to using win.printer/graphsheet
> > with a PostScript printer driver. On Windows 95 I know of no good one
> > for EPS (I use Adobe's driver for the distiller device, but it less than
> > ideal). On NT I believe that Adobe does now have a level-2 only driver
> > that gives EPS output.

[John Wallace]

> On Win95 try the 'Apple LaserWriter Pro 630' driver. After installing, go
> to Properties and look under the Postscript tab. Under 'PostScript output
> format' there is an option for EPS. Also, under the same tab, the
> 'Advanced' button will give an option for Level 2 or Level 1 features.
> A look at some test output from Splus shows the first line as:
> %!PS-Adobe-3.0 EPSF-3.0
> And importing into Gsview gives the type as 'EPS'.
> Works for me, but I am unsure how 'ideal' it is.

You can indeed produce EPS from the Microsoft Win95 printer drivers (as
I said), but it is far from ideal. In fact, I would say it is poor
postscript, and not properly resolution independent (which you need for
EPS which is almost certainly going to be rescaled) and full of
unneeded code (for EPS). The Adobe printer driver set for Windows 95
(from their Web site, or with Acrobat 3.01: the full set, not just
Reader) is better, but still not as good as one would hope. My
preference is the Adobe driver with the distiller PPD: that is set up
to produce as `clean' postscript as possible.

This is not a small point: I can quite clearly see the differences
between output produced on Unix and on Windows S-PLUS (via any of the
routes) even on a 600dpi printer in the evenness of the lines and the
accuracy of the tick labels, after including at, say, 10cm width in
a LaTeX document. On a phototypesetter it is screamingly obvious.

You cannot get EPS from Microsoft's WinNT printer drivers, AFAIK (and it
is discussed frequently on newsgroups). You can get level-2 only EPS from
Adobe's recent WinNT printer drivers.

The underlying problem is that MathSoft have never fixed postscript() in
Windows: I hope one day they will make the effort to port the Unix
device driver.

Brian D. Ripley,        
Professor of Applied Statistics,
University of Oxford,             Tel:  +44 1865 272861 (self)
1 South Parks Road,                     +44 1865 272860 (secr)
Oxford OX1 3TG, UK                Fax:  +44 1865 272595

----------------------------------------------------------------------- This message was distributed by To unsubscribe send e-mail to with the BODY of the message: unsubscribe s-news