[tex-live] merging texmf-doc into texmf-dist

Reinhard Kotucha reinhard.kotucha at web.de
Wed Feb 18 03:09:17 CET 2009

On 17 February 2009 Karl Berry wrote:

 > Last year, Heiko and others proposed merging texmf-doc back into
 > texmf-dist, eliminating one top-level tree for people and programs to
 > look at.  teTeX never used texmf-doc.
 > The original reason to have texmf-doc (Fabrice created it), as I
 > understand it, was to be able to easily access documentation by language.
 > Although one might hope that texdoc or other tools could offer that, the
 > reality is that they don't; maybe someday, but it's not simple to do.
 > I don't have strong feelings about the merge myself.  But if we're going
 > to change it, the time to do it will be when we start preparing the 2009
 > release, i.e., soon.
 > Can we reach a consensus, one way or another?

Hi Karl,
I don't think that it's sufficient to have texmf-doc in order to
determine the language of a particular file.  There are some files
written in English and French in texmf-dist/doc already and the
language can't be derived from the file system.  Thus, texmf-doc is
more or less useless.

The only reasonable way to support different langauges it that
interested people add language tags to the Catalogue XML files and
send patches to Robin.

At the moment, the directory structure is quite nice:


Do you intend to add an extra directory?  What I have in mind is
something like:


Otherwise the result would be


and this doesn't look like a big improvement.  It's even worse.  IMO,
what we have now is not bad.  Maybe some people are wondering what
texmf-doc is good for.  But is this really a problem?  Did you get any
complaints from "normal" users?  Merging the trees does not mean that
things will be more straightforward automatically.  The opposite is
more likely.

My opinion is that we either need a sensible directory structure for
texmf-dist, or we should leave things as they are.

Changing things requires a lot of work.  Maybe I'm blind, but I don't
see how what we have now can be improved significantly.

To be honest, I prefer to keep things as they are unless someone
comes up with a good reason to change anything.  And I absolutely have
no idea how things can be made more straightforward than they are
now.  Suggesting to get rid of texmf-doc is easier said than done.  At
least if the final result is supposed to be an improvement.

Karl, whenever you decide to change anything, please drop me a line.
I'll adapt the hyperlinks in Master/readme-html.dir/readme.*.html
accordingly, then. 


Reinhard Kotucha			              Phone: +49-511-3373112
Marschnerstr. 25
D-30167 Hannover	                      mailto:reinhard.kotucha at web.de
Microsoft isn't the answer. Microsoft is the question, and the answer is NO.

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