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

Siep Kroonenberg siepo at cybercomm.nl
Sun Apr 1 11:02:33 CEST 2007

On Sun, Apr 01, 2007 at 01:48:01AM +0200, Reinhard Kotucha wrote:
> >>>>> "Siep" == Siep Kroonenberg <siepo at cybercomm.nl> writes:
>   > Wouldn't it be better to make the Windows version of tlpmgui
>   > suitable for portable use? All it would take is using
>   > %USERPROFILE% instead of the root of the c:-drive, better
>   > Ghostscript-detection and a different policy for handling
>   > pre-installed Ghostscript, Perl and TeX.
> AFAIK tlpmgui for Linux and Windows share most of the code already.
> Regarding Ghostscript, it would be nice if we can simply put an
> unmodified version of Ghostscript on the CD/DVD.  At the moment there
> are two problems:
>     1. Batch files are not installed by the gs installer.
>     2. The fonts had been modified but the UniqueID had not been
>        changed. 
> The first problem can be solved easily by sending a bug report.  I
> can't imagine that the current behavior is intended.
> The second problem can be solved this way too, but if a bug report
> results in a discussion I'd rather wait until Jacko provides
> replacements for all the URW fonts.  I assume that Jacko's fonts will
> be shipped with ghostscript when they are ready anyway.  This will
> enhance the ghostscript distribution significantly. 
> Detection of a pre-installed Perl worked fine for me.  During the
> installation process a Window popped up asking me whether Perl should
> be installed or not.  Well, it would be nicer if this happens at the
> very beginning of the installation process, but maybe I overlooked
> something in the main menu.
> As far as TeX is concerned, sigh, this was painful.  The installer
> detected an old version of TeXLive and started in maintenace mode.
> Renaming the texlive2005 directory had not been sufficient.  I had to
> remove TL2005 related environment variables too.  This is extremely
> painful on Windows.  I do not see any good reason why an installer
> does not simply prepends the path to a new version of TeXLive to the
> %PATH% variable.

This won't do for portable use. The problem is that %path% consists
of the system path FOLLOWED BY the user path, for crying out loud;
Windows is full of such perverse streaks. For portable use, you
don't want to mess with the system path, so you'd better use a
preinstalled TeX, Perl and Ghostscript instead if they occur on the
system path.

Shortcomings in vbscript made it awkward to check the system path
and the user path separately, so my script just tests for their
occurrence on %path%, but with more effort or a better language one
could specifically test for the system path.

There is no problem in prepending components to %path% within a
command prompt session prior to starting up an editor. One would
have to test whether Emacs and TeXnicCenter pick up this path and
other environment settings, and pass them along to the various
TeXLive programs.

> I'm also wondering, though so much effort had been taken to provide an
> installer for Windows which works for some UNIX derivates too,
> installing TeXLive on a UNIX system (using the shell script) is so
> easy.

I can think of two reasons:
1. partial testing under Unix
2. to accomodate Windows refugees who still consider the
   command-line a dirty word.

Siep Kroonenberg

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