[tex-live] install-tl fails to download some files

George N. White III gnwiii at gmail.com
Wed Dec 9 19:12:33 CET 2009

On Wed, Dec 9, 2009 at 11:19 AM, Jukka Salmi <j+tex-live at 2009.salmi.ch> wrote:
> Helo,
> while installing TL I noticed that install-tl repeatedly failed to
> download some files.  Rerunning install-tl fixed the problem, but then
> it failed to download another file.  I kept going until the installation
> (scheme-full) finally succeeded:
> $ sudo ./install-tl
> [...]
> Enter command: i
> Installing to: /opt/texlive/2009
> Installing [0001/1962, time/total: ??:??/??:??]: 12many [376k]
> Installing [0002/1962, time/total: 00:01/42:37]: ANUfinalexam [3k]
> [...]
> Installing [0357/1962, time/total: 09:50/35:12]: collection-xetex [1k]
> Downloading http://mirror.switch.ch/ftp/mirror/tex/systems/texlive/tlnet/archive/collection-xetex.tar.xz did not succeed.
> Installation failed.
> [...]
> $ sudo ./install-tl
> ABORTED INSTALLATION FOUND: installation.profile
> Do you want to continue with the exact same settings as before (y/N): y
> [...]
> Is this expected behaviour?  It seems that the installer gives up too
> early if downloading a file fails.  On the other hand, it probably
> shouldn't have failed if it succeeds seconds later...  Any thoughts?
> Regards, Jukka
> --
> This email fills a much-needed gap in the archives.

Well, actually the problem has been discussed, so there is no
"gap" in the archives.   Finding optimal settings (retries, timeouts)
for all users is difficult when some have dodgy internet connections
to distant mirrors while others have a nearby mirror.   For myself
(on the dodgy distant end of the spectrum), it works much better
to mirror the TL archives at a time when most of the continent is
sleeping (e.g., shortly before dawn on the East coast).   During the
day it may help to choose a server where local users are likely to
be sleeping, even it is half a globe away.

One added note: I find that downloads from Ubuntu repos often
bog down to  a few kB/sec with estimated time to completion in
days.  In aptitude, stopping the downloads ("q") and restarting
sometimes results in much higher rates and the update
completes in a matter of minutes.   I attribute this to traffic
shaping that detects a large download session. Restarting
may not go to the same server, as I use "archive.ubuntu.com".
In any case, if you are trying to install quickly and can't afford
to wait overnight, restarting may help.

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

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