LaTeX use has become so widespread that several journals actually distribute their own LaTeX style sheets so that authors can with very little effort (in principle just by changing a line) change their papers to the exact format they will appear in the journal. The resultant decrease in time to press is one extra reason to use LaTeX for one's papers, technical reports or theses.
LaTeX recently had a major upgrade to version LaTeX2e, thus combining LaTeX with features from AMSTeX and other TeX macro packages. The newest edition of Lamport's book describes this version - this could cause confusion as there are differences with the older editions some people may have. LaTeX2e uses a "compatibility mode" to process LaTeX files that would work with the previous version (2.0.9); working in this mode is about 50% slower so it is suggested that you eventually strat producing documents that conform to the new standard.
CFM currently supports LaTeX2e on the SGI's and LaTeX 2.0.9 on the Suns. Those Suns that move from SunOS 4.1.* to Solaris will also have LaTeX2e.
Following are the commands to work with ".tex" files:
tex file_name.tex latex file_name.tex slitex file_name.tex
dvips file_name.dvi -o
ghostscript file_name.ps ghostview file_name.ps
You can also find out more about *TeX by checking out the following: