William Blum's website

Crowdsourcing Cracklock 64-bit

Websites analytics are sometimes revealing. Among people who come to visit my website there is the LaTeX user category coming to learn about my past work on SumatraPDF. Once in a blue moon somebody may come and peek at my research page if I'm lucky. Some folks get here by accident hoping to find information about my American homonym. But the vast majority visits this site for another reason (...)

Published: Thursday, 26 November 2015, 6:25 AM
Tags: windows, 64-bit, cracklock
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Website design overhaul

About 17 years have passed since I created this website. Because I have a thing for prime numbers I decided to celebrate this special anniversary with a design refresh. In the process I took the opportunity to perform a full overhaul of the technologies used to power the site.

Published: Thursday, 5 November 2015, 10:11 AM
Tags: website, blog, fsharp, f#
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Big Climb Fundraising for the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society

Do you want to help blood cancer research? You can do that by donating at my Big Climb fundraising page before March 22nd.

Published: Sunday, 22 February 2015, 11:37 PM
Tags: leukemia, big climb, lls
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On text sorting, the fact that Notepad++ is the best text editor, and 2011 wishes!

A few years ago I spent some time looking for the best text editor for Windows. After testing pretty much all the editors available at the time (Notepad2, Notepad++, UltraEdit, UltraPad, TextPad...) I finally reckoned that the most powerful and versatile one was Notepad++. I have been using it since then and I regularly recommend it to other people.

Published: Sunday, 23 January 2011, 10:32 AM
Tags: notepad++, sorting, plugin
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Plotting thesis word count

I have been playing around with PowerShell lately. Here is the little exercise that I set myself: measure and plot the evolution of the number of words in a TeX document.

Published: Tuesday, 16 November 2010, 2:31 AM
Tags: word-count, gnu plot, latex, thesis
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Configuring editors with SumatraPDF 

This document explains how to configure your favourite editor for synchronization with SumatraPDF.

Published: Friday, 10 October 2008, 12:00 AM
Tags: synctex, latex, sumatrapdf, winedt
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SyncTeX-related news

Most TeX distributions (TeXLive 2008 and MikTex 2.7) have now been updated to support SyncTeX. The option is activated with the -synctex switch at the command-line as follows:

Published: Tuesday, 7 October 2008, 7:44 PM
Tags: windows, synctex, sumatrapdf, latex
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SyncTeX and SumatraPDF

The author of the pdfsync TeX package, Jérôme Laurens, has developed a new technology called SyncTex that will eventually replace pdfsync. SyncTex is directly integrated in pdftex. This has many benefits: there is no need to load a special package in your .tex document, there is no more incompatibilities with latex packages, and the synchronization is more precise. One disadvantage is that the generated synchronization file can be huge, and for that reason it has an option to zip it.

Published: Thursday, 12 June 2008, 2:00 AM
Tags: windows, synctex, sumatrapdf, latex
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PDF-Latex synchronization (continued)

This is the dual of the previous post: I have now implemented forward-search in SumatraPDF, i.e. the ability to go from the source .tex file to the corresponding location in the PDF. The communication between the TeX editor and SumatraPDF relies on the DDE protocol. (Most TeX editors such as WinEdt and TeXnicCenter support it.)

Published: Thursday, 15 May 2008, 4:54 AM
Tags: windows, synctex, sumatrapdf, latex
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Synchronizing PDF files with Latex documents 

I am currently in the process of writing up my PhD thesis using Latex. I just realized how spoiled Mac users are when it comes to TeX tool support: nearly all Tex editors support viewing PDF files with source synchronization ( iTeXMac2, TextMate,

TeXniscope, TeXShop, PDFViewer). On the windows platform, until recently, not a single PDF viewer was capable of doing that including Acrobat, PDF-XChange Viewer, Foxit reader, and SumatraPDF.

Of course under the Windows platform we have the Yap DVI viewer that comes with the MikTeX distribution. Ah, Yap,... This crappy piece of software that becomes less and less usable as the version increases: poor responsiveness when browsing the document, no pre-caching of the images, polling the .dvi file thousands times a millisecond to check whether its content has changed instead of using the proper Windows API, blocking of the .dvi file preventing latex from compiling, and last but not least: loads of modal error messages forcing you to switch to the mouse to get rid of them when you just want to be typing your latex document.

Published: Wednesday, 14 May 2008, 2:39 AM
Tags: windows, synctex, sumatrapdf, latex
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The XML/Docbook/XSLT toolchain

Recently I have tried to learn how to use the Docbook toolchain to produce documentation. My overall impression is not so good. I have many complaints but I am mainly concerned with its poor performance.

Published: Monday, 21 January 2008, 5:31 AM
Tags: xml, docbook, xslt, windows
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Cracklock 3.8.27 released!

A new release of Cracklock is available!

Published: Saturday, 1 December 2007, 7:02 PM
Tags: windows, cracklock
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