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LyX (styled as ) is an open source document processor based on top of the LaTeX typesetting system. Unlike most word processors, which follow the WYSIWYG ("what you see is what you get") paradigm, LyX has a WYSIWYM ("what you see is what you mean") approach, where what shows up on the screen is only an approximation of what will show up on the page.

Since LyX largely functions as a front-end to the LaTeX typesetting system, it has the power and flexibility of LaTeX, and can handle documents including books, notes, theses, to academic papers, letters, etc. Knowledge of the LaTeX markup language is not necessary for basic usage, although a variety of specialized formatting is only possible by adding LaTeX directives directly into the page.

LyX is popular among technical authors and scientists for its advanced mathematical modes, though it is increasingly used by non-mathematically-oriented scholars as well[1][2] for its bibliographic database integration[3] and ability to manage multiple files.[3] LyX has also become popular among self-publishers.[4][5]

LyX is available for various operating systems, including Windows, Mac OS X, Linux, UNIX, OS/2 and Haiku. LyX can be redistributed and modified under the terms of the GNU General Public License and is thus free software.


  • GUI with menus
  • Automatically numbered headings, titles, and paragraphs, with table of contents
  • Text is laid out according to standard typographic rules, including indents, spacing, and hyphenation
  • Support for right-to-left languages like Arabic,[6] Persian,[7] and Hebrew,[8] including support for bi-directional text
  • Support for Chinese, Japanese, and Korean languages
  • Basic support, as of LyX 2.0, for the XeTeX and LuaTeX typesetting systems[9]
  • Standard operations like cut/paste, spell-checking
  • Notes
  • Textclasses and templates similar to the \documentclass[arguments]{theclass} command in LaTeX
  • BibTeX Support
  • Table Editor (WYSIWYG)
  • Math Editor (WYSIWYG)
  • Ability to import various common text formats
    Screenshot of PDF document created with LyX
  • Ability to natively export the document to DocBook SGML, XHTML and plain text
  • SVN-support for collaboration
  • And others – see detailed list


Matthias Ettrich started developing a shareware program called Lyrix in 1995. It was then announced on USENET, where it received a great deal of attention in the following years.

Shortly after the initial release, Lyrix was renamed to LyX due to a name-clash with a word processor produced by the company Santa Cruz Operation.[10] The name LyX was chosen because of the file-suffix '.lyx' for Lyrix files.[11]


  • LyX 0.7.0 was released on October 24, 1995.
  • LyX 1.0.0 was released on February 1, 1999.
  • LyX 1.2.0 was released on May 29, 2002.
  • LyX 1.3.0 was released on February 7, 2003.
  • LyX 1.4.0 was released on March 8, 2006.
  • LyX 1.5.0 was released on July 27, 2007.
  • LyX 1.6.0 was released on November 10, 2008.
  • LyX 2.0.0 was released on May 8, 2011.[12]
  • LyX 2.1.0 was released on April 25, 2014.[13]

Besides the main distribution of LyX which requires installation, there is also an unofficial portable version integrated with TeXLive called LyTeX.[14]


According to the project's wiki, the developers pronounce LyX as Template:IPA-de, like the English word "licks", or Template:IPA-de.[15]

See also



External links

Template:Word processors Template:TeX editors Template:Desktop publishing software