NOTE: It is also rather out of date; I make no claim that any of the below is still relevant. Please consider hosting it yourself!
This page is my attempt to pass on something useful from what I learned during my not-so-recent thesis completion, in October 2000. I hope it may save some of you from pain and late-night LaTeX formatting nightmares.
Notice that the Harvard GSAS format is only necessary for the bound (Archives) copy of the thesis, and its associated unbound (boxed) copy, both of which are submitted to the Registar's Office. Copies for your research group, copies for your departmental library (in my case Physics Research Library), personal copies, etc, need not follow this format, and will certainly look more professional if you play with the format (see below).
One of the crucial things I learned from her was the preferred font size: 12pt Times New Roman. So put away that ruler and stop counting average characters per inch (CPI) - this is an outdated specification (thankfully). Also the new format of the Abstract is not crucial: as long as you have the new information (your name, advisor's name, thesis title) on the page somewhere then it's fine. I have updated the .cls file to include a new Abstract format that I designed. The page-numbering in the front matter is also not crucial, she told me; as long as arabic-numbered pages start at 1 on the first page of Chapter 1, then this is fine (for instance, my style file below does not put iii on the first page of the Abstract, but does put iv on the second, etc).
You will also need the font specification files: hut10.clo, hut11.clo, hut12.clo, depending on which font size you use (remember 10pt is smaller than 12pt). I found that for my own thesis copies, 11pt was more appropriate than the almost childishly-large 12pt required for Harvard.
Also you might want to read ucthesis.readme which is a description of the features of the original style file. I found that 'draft' mode was not so good as simply using \ssp at the beginning of the document.
To get you going, you can latex my thesis skeleton, get that working, then inject your content and play around. You will need:
thesis.tex (main file: chooses packages, gives order of chapters and appendices)The whole package (huthesis.cls, hut*.clo, ucthesis.readme, and my skeleton) can be downloaded here as a gzipped tar file.
frontmatter.tex (abstract, acknowledments, citations to published work, dedication, etc)
mathdefs.tex (I include in case you find any of my equation abbreviations in there useful - certainly the \be and \ee save your wrists. It also includes a semi-workable version of the APS mathletters macro which allows you to number blocks of equations 3a,3b, etc... however the referencing of these equation numbers still has errors! Let me know if you solve this one.)
ch1.tex (my actual chapter 1 - includes references to other chapters which will not be resolved [appear as ??])
ap1.tex (dummy appendix A)
fig1.eps (example Encapsulated PostScript figure used in appendix A)
b.tex (wrapper for bibliography)
bibs.bib (actual bibliography - in BibTeX format)
You will need to ensure that the huthesis.cls and hut*.clo files are accessible in a directory which is included on your TEXINPUTS environment variable, so latex can find them. Then simply execute the command 'latex thesis', and you will get a prompt asking which files you want to process. Type eg 'frontmatter,ch1' to latex those two sections, or any combination of chapters and appendices separated by commas. This feature really saves some time while editing single chapters. Enter 'all' to latex the whole thing. This should run without errors, and give the .dvi file. As usual you will need to rerun it, and run 'bibtex thesis' at the appropriate times. (For latex info see here, here, here and here, etc. and the usual books.) I included (using epsfig) an example figure placed using the float package.
Also maybe relevant is a Harvard thesis.cls page, which I did not find useful at all (it seems to have vanished anyway).
Please email me with any suggestions or additions: ahb at math dot dartmouth dot edu
Better still: become the new maintainer of this page, since I've been out 11 years now... !
Dec 8, 2011
Additional thanks to: Bill Bies; Marc Hill; Nusrat Rabbee (abstract debug); Jamie Kellogg and David Kastrup (for preview-latex compatibility); Frederick Matsen, Dan Hopkins (minor fixes).