[Research] - LaTex on Windows - Step by step installation

In this blog, I will instruct you on how to install and writing LaTex documents on Windows with ease.

1. Requirement

1.1 List of software

First thing first, you would need to download and install a series of software.

Choose the correct version with your windows (x86/x64)

  1. StrawberryPerl
  2. Visual Studio Code (text editor, not confused with Visual Studio IDE)
  3. MikTex (easier to install and use)

For me, MikTex is kinda difficult to download. The server close connection every 30-45 secs. If this happened to you, use a download manager. For example: Free Download Manager

1.2 Installing MikTex

Accept all default option, and wait for the installation completed.

Start > MikTex Console > Updates > Check for updates

Update MikTex Packages

In case of difficult in download packages, you can change ‘Install from’ option with a http repository

Install latexmk package


2. Setup on Visual Studio Code

If you are opening Visual Studio Code while installing MikTex and Perl ActiveState, please CLOSE Visual Studio Code and open it again.

Open Extension > search for Latex > Install LaTeX Workshop

LaTeX Workshop

3. Writing on Visual Studio Code

It is recommended to create a folder for each LaTeX document (to store images, charts, data file, etc).

Open that folder with Visual Studio Code, create a new file ended with .tex

Open that .tex file, then you can start playing with your LaTeX

writing latex

To preview the rendered PDF, you can click on small icon on the top-right corner

preview PDF

4. Collaboration

Okay okay, it’s cool, but why do I need to write LaTeX offline, using Visual Studio Code, instead of the awesome Overleaf?

The answer is the price. For collaboration, overleaf offer 80 USD/year for 6 students (the price is higher if you don’t have student account).

With visual studio code, it’s free, and super fast too.

4.1 VSCode Live Share

Live Share is an amazing feature offered by Microsoft. It’s not even share files, it’s also share folders and projects.

To begin with, install VS Live Share extension

Live Share

4.2 Start Collaboration

After installation complete, a new feature appeared in VSCode

Click on that Live Share feature, then Start collaboration session...

start collaboration session

It will open a new website that require you login with either Microsoft Account (outlook, hotmail, live) or GitHub Account.

For this tutorial, I will use my github account


After authorized, Live Share will start working. You can paste the generated link for other users

copy the link

4.3 Join a shared collaboration session

If you are not the one who sharing, but the one who join, it’s even easier.

Open Live Share feature > Join collaboration session > Paste the link you have to the box appeared then press Enter

If successful, it should be like this

join collaboration session

4.4 Live Share Maximum collaborators

The short answer: 5

For more information on when/how you can increase this number can be found here: https://github.com/MicrosoftDocs/live-share/releases/tag/0.3.788