LyX - A Document Processor
lyx [ command-line switches ] [ name[.lyx] ... ]
LyX is too complex to be described completely in the "man" page format.
If your system is properly configured, you can access the full
documentation within LyX under the Help menu.
LyX is a document preparation system. It excels at letting you create
complex technical and scientific articles with mathematics,
cross-references, bibliographies, indices, etc. It is very good at
documents of any length in which the usual processing abilities are
required: automatic sectioning and pagination, spellchecking, and so
forth. It can also be used to write a letter to your mom, though
granted, there are probably simpler programs available for that. It is
definitely not the best tool for creating banners, flyers, or
advertisements, though with some effort all these can be done, too.
Some examples of what it is used for: memos, letters, dissertations and
theses, lecture notes, seminar notebooks, conference proceedings,
software documentation, books (on PostgreSQL, remote sensing,
cryptology, fictional novels, poetry, and even a children's book or
two), articles in refereed scientific journals, scripts for plays and
movies, business proposals... you get the idea.
Currently, LyX uses the Qt4 library as a toolkit. LyX should run
everywhere, where this library runs. This is on all major Unix
platforms as well as Windows and Mac OS X (which actually is a unix
LyX supports the following command-line switches.
-help summarizes LyX usage
provides version information on the build of LyX.
sets system directory. Normally not needed.
sets user directory. Needed if you want to use LyX with different
set geometry of the main window.
where feature is a name or number. Use "lyx -dbg" to see the
list of available debug features.
-x [--execute] command
where command is a lyx command.
-e [--export] fmt
where fmt is the export format of choice. Look on
Tools->Preferences->File formats->Format to get an idea which
parameters should be passed.
-i [--import] fmt file.xxx
where fmt is the import format of choice and file.xxx is the file
to be imported.
-f [--force-overwrite] what
where what is is either "all" or "main". Using "all", all files
are overwritten during a batch export, otherwise only the main
file will be. When this switch is followed by anything else other
than "all" or "main", the behavior is as if "all" was specified,
but what follows is left on the command line for further
can be used to specify which system directory to use.
The system directory is determined by searching for the file
"chkconfig.ltx". Directories are searched in this order:
1) -sysdir command line parameter
2) LYX_DIR_16x environment variable
3) Maybe <path of binary>/TOP_SRCDIR/lib
4) <path of binary>/../share/<name of binary>/
5) hardcoded lyx_dir (at build time: /usr/share/lyx)
can be used to specify which user directory to use.
The user directory is, in order of precedence:
1) -userdir command line parameter
2) LYX_USERDIR_16x environment variable
3) $HOME/.<name of binary> if no explicit setting is made
can be used to tell LyX where to look for the translations of
its GUI strings in other languages.
~/.lyx/preferences Personal configuration file
~/.lyx/lyxrc.defaults Personal autodetected configuration file
LIBDIR/lyxrc.dist System wide configuration file
LIBDIR/configure.py Updates LyX if config has changed
LIBDIR/clipart/ Clipart pictures
LIBDIR/doc/ Documentation in LyX format.
LIBDIR/examples/ Example documents
LIBDIR/images/ Images used as icons or in popups
LIBDIR/kbd/ Keyboard mappings
LIBDIR/layouts/ Layout descriptions
LIBDIR/templates/ Templates for documents
LIBDIR/tex/ Extra TeX files
LIBDIR is the system directory. This was at build time /usr/share/lyx.
Full documentation in either native LyX or postscript format.
There are still some bugs in LyX. To report one, read if possible the
Introduction found under the Help menu in LyX. You'll find detailed
info on submitting bug reports there. If you can't do that, send
details to the LyX Developers mailing list firstname.lastname@example.org, or
use the LyX bug tracker at http://bugzilla.lyx.org/. Don't forget to
mention which version you are having problems with!
LaTeX import is still not perfect and may produce buggy *.lyx files.
Consult the tex2lyx documentation.
LyX is Copyright (C) 1995 by Matthias Ettrich, 1995-2009 LyX Team