Choosing a suitable typesetter for your documents
This article concerns the
macOS
app.

Typesetting takes your LaTeX (or markdown) source code and outputs the formatted PDF, highlighting if necessary any errors in your code. In simplest terms, the typeset process takes a .tex file and produces a PDF document from it,

typesetting/process.svg

In Texpad, the editor containing the LaTeX source code (i.e., your .tex file or files) and the output PDF live side-by-side, making it easier for you to visualise the output of the text you’re composing.

Since LaTeX is akin to a programming language and programs can contain errors while they’re being written and fine-tuned, this process may report certain errors. Texpad’s displays these errors in an easy-to-navigate table in its Sidebar. Clicking on these errors will take you to the offending line of LaTeX code, making it easier to quickly fix errors and continue writing.

In advanced use cases where bibliographies, indices and other types of content is involved, the typeset process can get rather complex, requiring multiple, precise calls to various LaTeX tools.

A typeset operation triggered by the spinning wheel on the toolbar or Cmd- T triggers a typesetting chain that implements the complete sequence of calls to the underlying tools (typesetting or bibliography engines) such as pdfLaTeX, BibTeX, MakeIndex, etc that are required to typeset a document, compile its references and convert any PS or DVI files to PDF. Based on the choice of the underlying tool in typeset configuration pane (see above), Texpad calculates this sequence automatically.

The actual process of taking some text files with your LaTeX source and generating a PDF is handled by the underlying typesetter. A typesetting engine is an underlying tool or a set of tools that takes as its input a root latex document and produces a PDF. This underlying engine is often auto-sensed for you by Texpad.

By default, Texpad aims to open all documents using the in-built typesetter TexpadTeX. When it deems that an external typesetter may be better suited to compile the document, it selects that instead.