[tex-live] TEXMFHOME when using install-tl on a Mac

Reinhard Kotucha reinhard.kotucha at web.de
Wed Oct 5 20:35:34 CEST 2011

On 2011-10-05 at 12:22:58 -0400, Alan Munn wrote:

 > Most of us who use Macs install the fantastic MacTeX version of TL,
 > but every so often the odd Mac user (pun intended) installs TL
 > using install-tl.  Sometimes this is in fact necessary, since
 > MacTeX requires admin access to install, so a user without admin
 > rights can't use MacTeX, I think.
 > So here's the question: what does install-tl assume is the value to
 > TEXMFHOME when it runs on a Mac?
 > This Stack Exchange question, which describes such a case
 > <http://tex.stackexchange.com/q/30494/2693>, seems to show that it
 > defaults to /home/<user>/texmf

The default is ~/texmf, where ~ expands to $HOME on Unix and
$USERPROFILE on Windows.

 > If true, this is an unfortunate decision, since 99% of all advice
 > about local additions for Mac users will point people to
 > /Users/<user>/Library/texmf.

TeX Live is a multi-platform distribution and there is only one config
file for all platforms.  Thus, it has to use a directory by default
which exists everywhere.  If you want something else, you can change
TEXMFHOME during installation.  If you don't have admin rights, you
have to adapt the other installation paths too, so what's the problem?
 > If this isn't the case, then how might this user have arrived at
 > that value?
 > On a related note, it might be helpful to have some very strongly
 > worded messages in install-tl recommending MacTeX over install-tl
 > for Mac unless (i) the person really knows what they are doing
 > and/or (ii) it's absolutely necessary.

There is enough information at http://tug.org/texlive , there is no
reason not to use TeX Live and there is no need to change TEXMFHOME.


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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