My previous stab at LaTeX on Windows have left me unsatisfied - LaTeX's Unix roots were showing. I had to get into the DOS box, run one executable to compile the document and another one to generate PDF. I would like this to be much more streamlined.
My objective is to be able to generate PDF files from a currently-edited LaTeX source file via one button click. I am not interested in any other output format and I do not want to get down to the shell.
- Download and install MiKTeX from http://miktex.org This is the (La)TeX implementation for windows - it's the thing that actually processes and compiles the document. MiKTeX is able to download packages automatically for you which is great. The download is large.
- Download and install TeXnicCenter from http://www.toolscenter.org This is the Windows IDE. It's a good idea to install it after Step 1, since a lot of it is auto-configured once you point it to the MiKTeX installation.
- One TeXnicCenter is setup for MiKTeX, you should be notified that the PDF (among others) Profile is created. Write up a sample document. Go to Build -> Output Profile and select LaTeX ==> PDF. Go to Build -> Current File -> Build and View. If you did everything right, this should compile your document down to a PDF and show it to you in your default PDF viewer.