DVIWIN


This is the home page of DVIWIN; it will eventually serve as a repository for information about the program and any related projects. The site is obviously under construction, but you may find some items of interest.
Latest DVIWIN Beta version

Here is the most recent beta version as well as a few sample files:


Last "Official" Version

If you dislike betas, you can download the last "official" release of the program; unfortunately, it is quite old (December 1994). At least it works reasonably well under all versions of Windows 9x, Windows NT and Windows 2000.


Other TeX related projects

As far as I can tell, there are several major problems with DVI files:

  1. Strong font dependencies; if one tries to view/print a DVI file and does not have all the required fonts, then it takes some effort to locate and install the needed fonts.
  2. Difficult font installation on most DVI drivers; this has been improved to some extent with the TDS standard, but it still requires manual work and more importantly, it requires quite a bit of knowledge from the user.
  3. Incompatibilities among DVI drivers in including graphics; this can be solved at the TeX level by using a macro package like LaTeX2e, but it cannot be easily solved at the DVI level.
  4. Inconvenience from the fact that the graphics, sounds and other files referenced by a DVI file are linked rather than embedded. If for example you download from the Web a DVI file that includes graphics files, then you will not be able to see the graphics unless you download the appropriate files as well. This is extremely inconvenient; a common solution is to place the DVI file as well as all its dependents in a ZIP or TAR.GZ or TAR.BZ2 file; another solution is to use the "<html:base href=...>" HyperTeX special. Both methods have advantages and disadvantages.
If we can solve these problems, then the DVI files can be truly portable among users, DVI drivers and operating systems. That's in essence what Adobe achieved with its PDF format (compared to PS or EPS).

I have been working on a solution for the first two problems; I call it the "TeX Font Server" (TFS) project and you can obtain more information about it at the TFS home page. I think that it completely solves the font portability problem.

The third problem (incompatibilities about graphics specials) is much tougher to solve. I have added support for the "PSfile" specials in order to be more compatible with dvips and I have added quite a few graphics filters, but the problem still remains. It is especially acute with macros that generate direct PostScript code; there is no hope of using such macros on anything other than dvips + a PS interpreter. It would be best for everybody if the TeX community could come to an agreement about some standard graphics specials.

The fourth problem (inconvenience with multiple files) is not that easy either: the "<html:base href=...>" approach has the fundamental flaw that one has to be connected to the net in order to process the DVI file. It appears that the ZIP, TAR.GZ or TAR.BZ2 approach is more advantageous, and I have implemented it in the new version of DVIWIN. The program can open DVI, DVI.GZ, DVI.BZ, TAR, TAR.GZ, TAR.BZ, TGZ, and TBZ files and it will automatically try to determine the format and compression method. For all archive formats, it is assumed that the archive contains a single DVI file and possibly attached graphics files, other hyperlinked documents, etc. This capability is completely orthogonal to the network capabilities of the program: consequently, you can fetch such files directly over the net.

Of course, any ideas or comments about any of the above are very welcome.


How to obtain and install fonts

If one has installed a recent TeX distribution (miktex for example), then one has already practically all fonts needed to view and print common DVI files. If however one just wants to view or print DVI files without having installed a TeX distribution, then one will be in trouble since it is not easy to find and install the needed fonts. This problem is dealt by the TFS project; until however a TFS server is operational, I decided to provide a "standard" set of fonts in a relatively easy to download and install form. The fonts are in Type 1 form from the public collections available at CTAN and cover quite a few font families. You can obtain downloading and installation instructions at:

http://dviwin.keystone.gr/texfonts/


Hippocrates Sendoukas
Last Update: April 22, 2002