[tex-live] mktexnam and SYSTEXMF (was: Bug#412242: tetex-bin: mktexpk places some fonts in the current directory)

Frank Küster frank at debian.org
Tue Mar 6 12:40:00 CET 2007

Dear TeX Live team,

a Debian user has discovered a problem with the placement of created
fonts: If there is already "something" for this font in TEXMFSYSVAR,
newly generated font files for a user are placed in the current
directory instead of their TEXMFVAR.  I think the reason for this is
that TEXMFSYSVAR is not in SYSTEXMF.  Does anybody know why this is so?
Is there any reason not to include TEXMFSYSVAR in the future?

Here are the details:

With ${MT_FEATURES=appendonlydir:texmfvar} in mktex.cnf, generated fonts
are preferrably placed in $TEXMFVAR.  However, if fonts are needed
during format creation (e.g. for cyrtex), and the format is created with
fmtutil-sys, then TEXMFVAR is set to TEXMFSYSVAR, and the fonts end up
there - a directory that is not writeable to users.

Now when this format is used and more font files are generated from the
same sources, mktexnam is used to determine the file placement, and
mktexnam has the following priorities:

- if there is already one file for this font at this size in an
  accessible tree, derivatives (tfm or pk derived from mf) are placed in
  the same tree

- if this is a system tree, use TEXMFVAR instead

- if the destination directory is not writable, use the current

TEXMFSYSVAR is not in SYSTEXMF, therefore, for pk fonts derived from
those created in format generation, TEXMFSYSVAR is chosen as destination
tree, and since this is not writable for users, files are created in the
current directory.

Regards, Frank

Dr. Frank Küster
Single Molecule Spectroscopy, Protein Folding @ Inst. f. Biochemie, Univ. Zürich
Debian Developer (teTeX/TeXLive)

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