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Software Required for LaTeX

LaTeX, BibTeX and Windows/Mac/Unix

There are many different operating systems and softwares which can be used to produce LaTeX documents.  This subject guide focuses largely on users of the Windows operating system because that is the main system used at QUT.  In many cases, there are alternative programs which may be used in your area of study or research. 

This subject guide is intended for those who are just starting out with LaTeX and BibTex. 

Apart from this guide, QUT does not provide troubleshooting support or classes to learn about LaTeX or BibTeX.  We suggest you use one of the resources in the Help Section if you have further queries.

LyX: almost a WYSIWYG-style editor

LyX is a WYSIWYG-type editor and has versions for Windows, Mac and Linux.  This may be all you need to write and compile LaTeX documents.  However there's still a learning curve and you will still need to understand some LaTeX .

In addition to the LyX program, you will also need to download an installation such as MikTeX [see below]. However, when you start installing LyX, it will guide you to install MikTeX if you have not already done so.

The free LyX software is available from

There is a very detailed wiki at which includes tutorials and other documentation.

The LaTeX Community Forum has a section dedicated to LyX.

* If you do not want to use this type of program, check the requirements below.

Software requirements for Windows

For Windows, you will need

1. MikTex 2.9 - a LaTeX compiler that runs in the background once installed to produce the document

  • Read Chapter 2 of the MikTex instruction manual before downloading the program
  • MikTex comes as a zipped file
    1. Download the Basic MiKteX 2.9 installer file from [There are 32-bit and 64-bit versions - choose the one relevant to your computer
    2. Double click on the file you just downloaded (called basic-miktex-2.9.4521.exe) to run the setup wizard which installs the program [There is a basic package or the full package - suggest the basic package as additional parts can be downloaded as required]
    3. Chapter 2 of the instruction manual [see above] shows the screens and options you will see
  • MikTeX must be installed before the other programs

2. GhostScript for converting graphical files such as tables and diagrams in postscript format

Get Ghostscript 9.06

3. GhostView to allow you to view the postscript files

Get GSView 4.9

4. Texmaker - a LaTeX text editor where the actual writing is done

Get Texmaker 3.5

       Get TeXnicCenter

5. A bibliographic reference manager to manage your references [optional]

Get JabRef 2.8.1

  or Mendeley


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