Debug plotting issues

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This page should help with debugging plotting and printing issues and to collect important information which should be included into bugreports or when asking on the mailinglist.


  • Operating system:
    • Windows: Is it XP 32bit or 64bit? Windows 7 or 8?
    • GNU/Linux: Have you installed Octave using your package system (apt-get, yum..) or via tarball?
  • If you get a warning on startup, for example "warning: function xyz.m shadows a built-in function" please copy it verbatim
  • If you get an error message, please copy the message verbatim

I can't plot or print or the output doesn't look as expected

Please create a simple, as small as possible example which shows the problem so others can reproduce the problem on their system and help you. Upload a screenshot (together with the script) if you can't describe it with words.

  • Which toolkit are you using? Execute 'graphics_toolkit' in octave to query it. Common toolkits are 'fltk' or 'gnuplot'. Consider switching to another available toolkit (see available_graphics_toolkits) and try it there. You have to execute (for exmaple sitch to gnuplot) 'graphics_toolkit gnuplot' before any plotting command.

printing with gnuplot


 print("testplot.eps", "-debug")

and attach the generated octave-print-commands.log and debug message.

printing with fltk

A common problem is that printing with fltk only works if the figure is visible, see [1]