[tex-live] Tex Live 2016 on RaspberryPi - where is biber?

Johannes Hielscher jhielscher at posteo.de
Wed Jul 6 00:15:40 CEST 2016

Am Tue, 5 Jul 2016 20:49:02 +0200
schrieb Helge <helge.paternoga at googlemail.com>:

> Hello,
> I would like to use TeX Live in my living room on my RaspberryPi 
> (running Raspbian Jessie 2016-05-27).
> Recently I had some issues with TeX Live on my Desktop system
> (Debian), where I had to uninstall Texlive from the Debian repository
> and reinstall the Vanilla Version (as documented here 
> <http://www.tug.org/texlive/debian.html>). The problem was that
> "biber" produced errors, without any changes to Texlive. I realized
> that it had to do with the recent updates to Perl in Debian, thats
> why I switched to Tex Live 2016. Since then its working flawlessly.
> Therefore I chose the same approach for my RaspberryPi, running 
> Raspbian. I installed Texlive 2016 as mentioned above + Texstudio
> (from the raspi repository), which worked fine. But now there seems
> to be no version of "biber" installed. It is not present in the /bin
> folder and when I do sudo find / -name "biber", it only finds the
> source and doc of biber 2.5. What i don't understand is that in tlmgr
> it shows biber 2.4 as installed (+ when I click on update or install,
> it says that it is already installed), yet I can't find the binary.
> Do I have to build biber myself?
Basically yes (see below).
> When running "perl Build.PL" it
> gives me all the prerequisites, that are not met (basically
> everything), but two are actually installed, but out of date. Is it
> possible to compile this on the RasPi without also compiling the
> prerequisites? I'm currently running the script to install the
> missing prerequisites (takes a while on the RasPi), but I think this
> won't resolve the outdated ones?
The issue (as far as I overview the loose integration of biber binaries
into TeX Live) is that TeX Live does not care about biber binary
distributions itself, but rather refers to the upstream bundles
from biblatex-biber.sf.net . These include all the dozens of
non-standard Perl packages into a self-contained binary (contrary to
Debian maintainers, who have them in their repos, anyway, and can biber
make just depend on them).

Unfortunately, upstream provides only x86 and x86_64 binaries (Linux)
and so does TeX Live. Hence, the official way to get other
architectures, such as ARM, for biber into Vanilla TeX Live is to
contribute it directly to the biber team at Sourceforge.
There are some docs how to port biber to new systems, and in fact, some
time ago I started to do so for armv7h. Maybe knowing that someone else
misses biber on ARM (chromebook hardware here) motivates me to
contribute this effort to upstream (-:


> Anyway, thats it for now, I'm kinda new to this so I don't know whats 
> possible and what isn't. So some clarification would be really
> welcome ;)
> Thanks for reading!

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