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gs(1)                             Ghostscript                            gs(1)


       gs  -  Ghostscript  (PostScript  and  PDF language interpreter and pre-


       gs [ options ] [ files ] ... (Unix, VMS)
       gswin32c [ options ] [ files ] ... (MS Windows)
       gswin32 [ options ] [ files ] ... (MS Windows 3.1)
       gsos2 [ options ] [ files ] ... (OS/2)


       The gs (gswin32c,  gswin32,  gsos2)  command  invokes  Ghostscript,  an
       interpreter of Adobe Systems' PostScript(tm) and Portable Document For-
       mat (PDF) languages.  gs reads "files" in sequence and executes them as
       Ghostscript programs. After doing this, it reads further input from the
       standard input stream (normally the keyboard), interpreting  each  line
       separately and output to an output device (may be a file or an X11 win-
       dow preview, see below).  The  interpreter  exits  gracefully  when  it
       encounters  the "quit" command (either in a file or from the keyboard),
       at end-of-file, or at an interrupt signal (such  as  Control-C  at  the

       The  interpreter  recognizes  many  option  switches, some of which are
       described below. Please see the usage documentation for complete infor-
       mation.  Switches  may appear anywhere in the command line and apply to
       all files thereafter.  Invoking Ghostscript with the -h  or  -?  switch
       produces a message which shows several useful switches, all the devices
       known to that executable, and the search path for  fonts;  on  Unix  it
       also shows the location of detailed documentation.

       Ghostscript  may be built to use many different output devices.  To see
       which devices your executable includes, run "gs -h".

       Unless you specify a particular device, Ghostscript normally opens  the
       first one of those and directs output to it.

       If  built  with  X11 support, often the default device is an X11 window
       (previewer), else ghostscript will typically use the  bbox  device  and
       print on stdout the dimension of the postscript file.

       So  if the first one in the list is the one you want to use, just issue
       the command


       You  can  also  check  the  set  of  available  devices   from   within
       Ghostscript: invoke Ghostscript and type

            devicenames ==

       but  the  first  device  on  the  resulting list may not be the default
       device you determine with "gs -h".  To specify "AbcXyz" as the  initial
       output device, include the switch


       For example, for output to an Epson printer you might use the command

            gs -sDEVICE=epson

       The  "-sDEVICE="  switch  must  precede  the first mention of a file to
       print, and only the switch's first use has any effect.

       Finally, you can specify a default device in the  environment  variable
       GS_DEVICE.  The order of precedence for these alternatives from highest
       to lowest (Ghostscript uses the device defined highest in the list) is:

       Some devices can support different resolutions (densities).  To specify
       the resolution on such a printer, use the "-r" switch:

            gs -sDEVICE=<device> -r<xres>x<yres>

       For example, on a 9-pin Epson-compatible printer, you get  the  lowest-
       density (fastest) mode with

            gs -sDEVICE=epson -r60x72

       and the highest-density (best output quality) mode with

            gs -sDEVICE=epson -r240x72.

       If  you  select a printer as the output device, Ghostscript also allows
       you to choose where Ghostscript sends the output --  on  Unix  systems,
       usually  to  a temporary file.  To send the output to a file "",
       use the switch


       You might want to print each page separately.  To  do  this,  send  the
       output to a series of files ",, ..." using the "-sOut-
       putFile=" switch with "%d" in a filename template:


       Each resulting file receives one page of output, and the files are num-
       bered in sequence.  "%d" is a printf format specification; you can also
       use a variant like "%02d".

       On Unix and MS Windows systems you can also send output to a pipe.  For
       example,  to pipe output to the "lpr" command (which, on many Unix sys-
       tems, directs it to a printer), use the option


       Note that the '%' characters need to be doubled on MS Windows to  avoid
       mangling by the command interpreter.

       You can also send output to standard output:


       In  this  case  you must also use the -q switch, to prevent Ghostscript
       from writing messages to standard output.

       To select a specific paper size, use the command line switch


       for instance


       Most ISO and US paper sizes are recognized. See the usage documentation
       for  a  full  list,  or  the  definitions  in  the  initialization file

       Ghostscript can do many things other than print or view PostScript  and
       PDF  files.   For  example,  if  you want to know the bounding box of a
       PostScript (or EPS) file, Ghostscript provides a special "device"  that
       just prints out this information.

       For   example,   using  one  of  the  example  files  distributed  with

            gs -sDEVICE=bbox

       prints out

            %%BoundingBox: 0 25 583 732
            %%HiResBoundingBox: 0.808497 25.009496 582.994503 731.809445


       -- filename arg1 ...
              Takes the next argument as a file name as usual, but  takes  all
              remaining  arguments  (even  if  they have the syntactic form of
              switches) and defines the name "ARGUMENTS"  in  "userdict"  (not
              "systemdict")  as  an array of those strings, before running the
              file.  When Ghostscript finishes executing the  file,  it  exits
              back to the shell.

              Define  a  name  in "systemdict" with the given definition.  The
              token must be exactly one token (as defined by the "token" oper-
              ator) and may contain no whitespace.

       -dname Define a name in "systemdict" with value=null.

              Define  a  name  in  "systemdict"  with a given string as value.
              This is different from -d.  For example, -dname=35 is equivalent
              to the program fragment
                   /name 35 def
              whereas -sname=35 is equivalent to
                   /name (35) def

       -P     Makes  Ghostscript  to  look  first in the current directory for
              library files.  By default, Ghostscript no longer looks  in  the
              current  directory, unless, of course, the first explicitly sup-
              plied directory is "." in -I.  See also the INITIALIZATION FILES
              section  below,  and  bundled Use.htm for detailed discussion on
              search paths and how Ghostcript finds files.

       -q     Quiet startup: suppress normal startup messages, and also do the
              equivalent of -dQUIET.

              Equivalent  to -dDEVICEWIDTH=number1 and -dDEVICEHEIGHT=number2.
              This is for the benefit of devices (such as  X11  windows)  that
              require (or allow) width and height to be specified.

              Equivalent  to  -dDEVICEXRESOLUTION=number1 and -dDEVICEYRESOLU-
              TION=number2.  This is for the benefit of devices such as print-
              ers that support multiple X and Y resolutions.  If only one num-
              ber is given, it is used for both X and Y resolutions.

              Adds the designated list of  directories  at  the  head  of  the
              search path for library files.

       -      This  is  not really a switch, but indicates to Ghostscript that
              standard input is coming from a file or a pipe and not  interac-
              tively  from  the command line.  Ghostscript reads from standard
              input until it reaches end-of-file, executing it like any  other
              file, and then continues with processing the command line.  When
              the command line has been entirely processed, Ghostscript  exits
              rather than going into its interactive mode.

       Note  that  the  normal initialization file "" makes "system-
       dict" read-only, so the values of names defined with -D, -d, -S, or  -s
       cannot be changed (although, of course, they can be superseded by defi-
       nitions in "userdict" or other dictionaries.)


              Disables character caching.  Useful only for debugging.

              Disables the "bind" operator.  Useful only for debugging.

              Suppresses the normal initialization of the output device.  This
              may be useful when debugging.

              Disables the prompt and pause at the end of each page.  This may
              be desirable for applications where another program  is  driving

              Disables  the  use  of fonts supplied by the underlying platform
              (for instance X Windows). This may be  needed  if  the  platform
              fonts look undesirably different from the scalable fonts.

              Restricts  file  operations the job can perform. Now the default
              mode of operation.

              Leaves "systemdict" writable.  This is  necessary  when  running
              special  utility  programs,  but  is  strongly discouraged as it
              bypasses normal Postscript security measures.

              Selects an alternate initial output device, as described  above.

              Selects  an alternate output file (or pipe) for the initial out-
              put device, as described above.


       The -dSAFER option restricts file system accesses to  those  files  and
       directories  allowed  by  the  relevant  environment variables (such as
       GS_LIB)    or    by    the     command     line     parameters     (see for details).

       SAFER mode is now the default mode of operation. Thus when running pro-
       grams that need to open files or set restricted parameters  you  should
       pass the -dNOSAFER command line option or its synonym -dDELAYSAFER.

       Running  with  NOSAFER/DELAYSAFER  (as  the  same suggests) loosens the
       security and is thus recommended ONLY for debugging  or  in  VERY  con-
       trolled  workflows,  and  strongly NOT recommended in any other circum-


       The locations of many Ghostscript run-time files are compiled into  the
       executable  when  it  is  built.   On Unix these are typically based in
       /usr/local, but this may be different on your system.  Under  DOS  they
       are  typically  based in C:\GS, but may be elsewhere, especially if you
       install Ghostscript with GSview.  Run "gs -h" to find the  location  of
       Ghostscript  documentation  on your system, from which you can get more

              Startup files, utilities, and basic font definitions

              More font definitions

              Ghostscript demonstration files

              Diverse document files


       When looking for the initialization files "gs_*.ps", the files  related
       to  fonts,  or the file for the "run" operator, Ghostscript first tries
       to open the file with the name as  given,  using  the  current  working
       directory  if  no  directory is specified.  If this fails, and the file
       name doesn't specify an explicit  directory  or  drive  (for  instance,
       doesn't  contain  "/"  on  Unix  systems or "\" on MS Windows systems),
       Ghostscript tries directories in this order:

       1.  the directories specified by the -I switches in  the  command  line
           (see below), if any;

       2.  the  directories  specified  by the GS_LIB environment variable, if

       3.  the directories  specified  by  the  GS_LIB_DEFAULT  macro  in  the
           Ghostscript  makefile  when  the  executable was built.  When gs is
           built      on      Unix,      GS_LIB_DEFAULT       is       usually
           where "#.##" represents the Ghostscript version number.

       Each of these (GS_LIB_DEFAULT, GS_LIB, and -I parameter) may be  either
       a single directory or a list of directories separated by ":".


              String  of  options  to  be  processed  before  the command line

              Used to specify an output device

              Path names used to search for fonts

       GS_LIB Path names for initialization files and fonts

       TEMP   Where temporary files are made


       Ghostscript, or more properly the X11 display  device,  looks  for  the
       following resources under the program name "Ghostscript":

              The border width in pixels (default = 1).

              The name of the border color (default = black).

              The window size and placement, WxH+X+Y (default is NULL).

              The  number  of  x  pixels  per  inch  (default is computed from
              WidthOfScreen and WidthMMOfScreen).

              The number of y  pixels  per  inch  (default  is  computed  from
              HeightOfScreen and HeightMMOfScreen).

              Determines  whether  backing store is to be used for saving dis-
              play window (default = true).

       See the usage document for a more complete list of resources.   To  set
       these  resources on Unix, put them in a file such as "~/.Xresources" in
       the following form:

            Ghostscript*geometry:     612x792-0+0
            Ghostscript*xResolution: 72
            Ghostscript*yResolution: 72

       Then merge these resources into the X server's resource database:

            % xrdb -merge ~/.Xresources


       The various Ghostscript document files (above), especially Use.htm.


       See   and   the   Usenet   news    group


       This document was last revised for Ghostscript version 9.54.0.


       Artifex  Software,  Inc.  are  the  primary maintainers of Ghostscript.
       Russell J. Lang, gsview at, is the author  of  most  of
       the MS Windows code in Ghostscript.

9.54.0                           30 March 2021                           gs(1)

ghostscript 9.54.0 - Generated Sun Jun 6 09:35:26 CDT 2021
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