[Tex/LaTex] Passing parameters to a document


I compile most of my documents via Makefiles which take care of the bibliography, indexes, etc. Often I'd like to compile different versions from the same TeX file changing only small things (e.g. a beamer presentation plus a version with the handout option).

Is there any standard mechanism for passing parameters to the TeX file so that I can just type make handout to get the handout version in the above example?

Best Answer

I do this by using symlinks and testing the jobname. That is, I have a main (la)tex file and a bunch of symlinks to it. To find out which symlink was actually used, I examine the \jobname macro in my document and set certain parameters accordingly. In particular, if \jobname contains the string "handout", then the beamer class is called using the handout option. I do this by using a "wrapper" class which sets things up before calling the real class.

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