7.4 Document Viewers

Some new document formats have gained popularity since the advent of UNIX®; the standard viewers they require may not be available in the base system. We will see how to install such viewers in this section.

This section covers these applications:

Application Name Resources Needed Installation from Ports Major Dependencies
Acrobat Reader® light light Linux Binary Compatibility
gv light light Xaw3d
Xpdf light light FreeType
GQview light light Gtk+ or GNOME

7.4.1 Acrobat Reader®

Many documents are now distributed as PDF files, which stands for “Portable Document Format”. One of the recommended viewers for these types of files is Acrobat Reader, released by Adobe for Linux. As FreeBSD can run Linux binaries, it is also available for FreeBSD.

To install Acrobat Reader 8 from the Ports collection, do:

# cd /usr/ports/print/acroread8
# make install clean

A package is not available due to licencing restrictions.

7.4.2 gv

gv is a PostScript® and PDF viewer. It is originally based on ghostview but it has a nicer look thanks to the Xaw3d library. It is fast and its interface is clean. gv has many features, such as orientation, paper size, scale, and anti-aliasing. Almost any operation can be done with either the keyboard or the mouse.

To install gv as a package, do:

# pkg_add -r gv

If you cannot get the package, you can use the Ports Collection:

# cd /usr/ports/print/gv
# make install clean

7.4.3 Xpdf

If you want a small FreeBSD PDF viewer, Xpdf is a light-weight and efficient viewer. It requires very few resources and is very stable. It uses the standard X fonts and does not require Motif® or any other X toolkit.

To install the Xpdf package, issue this command:

# pkg_add -r xpdf

If the package is not available or you prefer to use the Ports Collection, do:

# cd /usr/ports/graphics/xpdf
# make install clean

Once the installation is complete, you can launch Xpdf and use the right mouse button to activate the menu.

7.4.4 GQview

GQview is an image manager. You can view a file with a single click, launch an external editor, get thumbnail previews, and much more. It also features a slideshow mode and some basic file operations. You can manage image collections and easily find duplicates. GQview can do full screen viewing and supports internationalization.

If you want to install the GQview package, do:

# pkg_add -r gqview

If the package is not available or you prefer to use the Ports Collection, do:

# cd /usr/ports/graphics/gqview
# make install clean