SyncTeX is here! Scroll, click, and hey presto!

By John Lees-Miller

Spotted a typo in your article? Need to make quick changes to text, figures or equations? Now you can simply click on the pdf preview and we'll take you straight to that line in the source text so you can edit it right away.

Jump straight to the place you want to edit with just one click

With the addition of SyncTeX to writeLaTeX, gone are the days when you need to hunt through source files to find that particular figure caption or equation - now you can just click on the pdf preview and the editor will jump to that line in the source code thanks to an automatic sync between text position in source and pdf.

Here's a quick example to show how it works...

John has just started working on his PhD thesis, and has sat down to write some content for chapter one:

WriteLaTeX SyncTeX demo screenshot 1

Wow, writing a thesis is hard! John scrolls through the template seeking inspiration and decides to postpone writing chapter one at the moment, to give the acknowledgements section a go instead. But where is the acknowledgements section in the source code?

WriteLaTeX SyncTeX demo screenshot 2

Now it's easy to find - John simply has to click on the acknowledgements section in the pdf preview (notice the the cursor has changed to a crosshair) and SyncTeX is activated:

WriteLaTeX SyncTeX demo screenshot 3

The editor opens the correct file and highlights the corresponding line in the source code. John can now start editing the acknowledgements section, and leave chapter one until later!

WriteLaTeX SyncTeX demo screenshot 4

That's all there is to it! If you want to go the other way (jump from source to pdf), you can do that too - there's a new option in the find menu in the editor:

WriteLaTeX SyncTeX demo screenshot 5

We hope you find this new feature useful, and if you have any questions please let us know.

John Lees-Miller

Co-founder, CTO

Computer scientist, mathematician and co-founder of Overleaf. I make things that work.