[tex-live] Running Live - no access to C drive

Siep Kroonenberg siepo at cybercomm.nl
Thu Mar 15 13:05:19 CET 2007

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On Sun, Mar 04, 2007 at 11:58:54PM -0800, poti giannakouros wrote:
> Reinhard Kotucha <reinhard.kotucha at web.de> wrote: >>>>> "Siep" == Siep Kroonenberg  writes:
>   > Of course you could also set environment variables via Settings /
>   > Control Panel System / Advanced tab / Environment variables.
> This is certainly much easier than setting the environment in Emacs.
> It has some other advantages as well.
> For the person who posted this thread, I can imagine this is true  but I am not 
>  sure if that is the case for me.
>  The endpoint I need is for a student to be able to put the DVD
>  into a random lab computer, probably a different one each time,
>  and just start working. Because of its particular inter-operation
>  with the R statistical language (these are Statistics students),
>  Emacs is a necessary component. Asking students to click around
>  setting environment variables each time will cost precious
>  goodwill, so I am glad to put the work in on my side. I chose to
>  go the Emacs route rather than tcl/tk (altering tlpmgui) because
>  learning about that is something more likely to be useful to me
>  in the near future than other alternatives. 

Here is a script for running TeX Live from dvd. It sets or modifies
some user-level environment variables, including path, and places
some files under %USERPROFILE%. In its current form, it does nothing
about dviout.

Formats and mapfiles are generated by a batchfile that the script
creates and runs at the end. That was the only way I could think of
to give mktexlsr etc. the necessary environment without forcing the
user to re-login. In its present form, it just generates a LaTeX
format but that is easily changed.

The script performs the following tests before doing anything:

It tests for Ghostscript, both on the searchpath and in the
registry, and bails out with an explanation if it doesn't find it.

It tests for another TeX on the searchpath and bails out if it does
find one.

It tests for another Perl on the searchpath, and won't set PERL5LIB
later on if it finds one. Since the script adds the texlive bin
directory at the end of the searchpath, a preinstalled Perl will get

LaTeX, pdflatex, dvips, mpost, mptopdf and epstopdf seem to work
ok. I could also use the TeXLive dvd as backend for TeXnicCenter.

I used vbscript because it is built into w2k and later, and has
functions for string handling and for accessing the registry.  Other
than that, it has strange omissions, a confusing syntax and terrible
debug facilities.

If anybody wants to delve in and needs documentation on vbscript:
find a WGA-enabled Windows system and download a .chm vbscript
reference from the microsoft site,

-- Siep Kroonenberg

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