[tex-live] Kpathsea in TL2007

George N. White III gnwiii at gmail.com
Mon Feb 19 14:02:04 CET 2007

On 2/18/07, Hartmut Henkel <hartmut_henkel at gmx.de> wrote:

> On Sun, 18 Feb 2007, Heiko Oberdiek wrote:
> > On Sun, Feb 18, 2007 at 12:20:08PM +0000, Philip & Le Khanh wrote:
> >
> > > it is as insane (IMHO) as the Windows default behaviour of /hiding/
> > > file extensions.
> >
> > Agreed, this is one of the first things I change if I have to work on
> > a windows system.

The majority of Windows users don't know that this is possible, and
there are sites where such settings are not preserved (users share a
pool of systems that are all made to look the same and
load a virgin system image on a regular basis).

> slightly off-topic, but even the LaTeX community is actively promoting
> the not-mentioning of file name extensions, e. g. in \includegraphics{},
> just look into the Niedermair book. This policy looks ridiculous imho.
> Just showing off that these things work out automagically? I'd say it's
> much better to always state the extension to specify _exactly_ what
> graphics type is wanted (e. g. you know after years, what file was to be
> included). Why shouldn't one write foo.png if one wants foo.png?

There are two issues here:

1.  kpathsea checks first for <filename>.tex:

kdebug:kpse_normalize_path (./a.pdf.tex) => 0
kdebug:kpse_normalize_path (./a.pdf) => 0

<a.pdf, id=59, 72.27pt x 72.27pt> <use a.pdf>

2.  macros that support searching a list of extensions under user
control (e.g., the graphichs package)

You have foo.png today, but the colors aren't correct in the PDF file,
so you will want foo.pdf created with a CMS aware app tomorrow.  The
package documentation spells out the rules and you have control over
the list of possible extensions.  The real problem is that users
encounter unexpected behaviour without good mechanisms to debug.
Kpathsea debugging is only useful for emacs users who can search the
output in a shell window.

A tex option to list all the files actually used by a document
(including .tfm, .map, and font files) together with their md5sums,
would be very helpful.

George N. White III <aa056 at chebucto.ns.ca>
Head of St. Margarets Bay, Nova Scotia

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