[tex-live] Running Live - no access to C drive (emacs approach)

Siep Kroonenberg siepo at cybercomm.nl
Mon Apr 2 11:03:15 CEST 2007

On Sun, Apr 01, 2007 at 01:25:53PM -0700, poti giannakouros wrote:
> Siep Kroonenberg <siepo at cybercomm.nl> wrote:
> > This script requires a reboot. On some lab Macs I have used,
> > a reboot reset all user settings. I don't know if this is a likely
> > scenario in a Windows lab, and it does not apply to our NT lab
> > so this is an approach I can use for some things.
> The lines above merely create a temporary environment for generating
> formats and mapfiles. The real configuration takes place earlier, by
> writing to the registry. I tested things under Windows XP and
> Windows 2000, and in those tests a re-login was sufficient.
> > This is a problem for our location. Lab users cannot
> > write to the registry. Parts of the ghostscript installation
> > and dviout installation done by tlpmgui issued warnings
> > when they got to apparently non-critical stages that I think
> > involved writing to the registry. I have not been to the
> > lab to test yet though.

Can users not even write to keys under HKEY_CURRENT_USER, in
particular HKEY_CURRENT_USER\environment and

And can you check what group a user on your lab belongs to? Power user,
regular/restricted user or something custom? Is there a roaming
profile setup (user configuration stored on network, and therefore
identical on all computers on the network)?

You could try to create a virtual test environment, running Windows
under VMware and setting your Linux box or a second virtual machine
up as Samba server. If you can create a good match to the lab setup
then you can test much more efficiently, examine a test machine with
full administrator privileges and create fresh copies of your test
machines with no effort at all.

> You mentioned to Reinhard Kotucha in another part of this thread using
> tlpmgui. My own thought with regard to tlpmgui was to see if it could
> have an option for configuring a master for a zero config DVD. That
> is, to automate what I have done, starting with the contents of the DVD
> image on writable media, installing into the TeX Live root hierarchy all 
> necessary auxiliary software (perhaps including the emacs source already 
> on the DVD? This gets complicated on Windows and last time I tried from 
> source on OS X), performing necessary configuration, such
> as setting paper defaults appropriately and inserting the emacs
> startup file, and possibly the ini file to launch the editor on
> DVD insertion as you suggest.

Some obstacles to portable use seem easy to overcome, and I hope
that the next Windows release will be portable. Besides that, people
may want to create customized versions for their own audience. It
remains to be seen whether that should be automated. But including
documentation and sample code on the dvd would already be a big

> > And personally I wouldn't worry too much about dvi viewing
> > if Ghostscript is available for converting to pdf.

> I will look into your suggestion about Ghostscript as an alternative
> to a dvi viewer. I thought about finding out how to change the AUCTeX
> default from latex and dvi to pdflatex and a pdf viewer. But then I
> had difficulty using Acrobat as the viewer, and set that aside.

I meant converting to PostScript with dvips, then converting to pdf
with Ghostscript and then start up a pdf viewer. Have a look at
SumatraPDF as an alternative to the Adobe Reader for Windows: tiny,
portable and open source.

Siep Kroonenberg

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