Issue with updmap-sys use of symlinks in cross platform installation

Reinhard Kotucha reinhard.kotucha at
Tue Mar 19 07:34:06 CET 2024

On 2024-03-18 at 15:37:58 -0600, Karl Berry wrote:

 > Hi John,
 >     I would like to propose that it also use copy when the windows
 >     platform is installed, even when is being run under
 >     another OS.
 > Reasonable, but doesn't have any easy way to know if windows
 > binaries are installed (it doesn't read tlpdb), though I guess something
 > could be hoked up for the native TL case. (E.g., see if
 > <bindir>/../windows exists.)
 >     Perhaps there are other situations when copy is needed instead
 >     of making symlinks, but updmap-sys does not detect the need.
 > In theory, if (under Unix) the tree is mounted on a filesystem that
 > doesn't support symlinks, for one. Clearly doesn't happen often in
 > practice or we would get bug reports.
 > Anyway, I wonder about simply using copy unconditionally. Do we gain
 > anything (apart from saving a tiny amount of disk :) by using symlinks?
 > I can't see what. Norbert? --thanks, karl.

Hi Karl,
symlinks don't only save disk space, in a directory listing they also
provide useful information.  I'm very glad that bin/x86_64-linux
doesn't look like bin/windows.

It would be great if could check whether bin/windows exists,
as you already suggested, so that Unix users who don't install
binaries for Windows don't suffer from the deficiencies of Windows.

I suppose that a small modification in sub SymlinkOrCopy is
sufficient.  Line 596

  if (wndws() || $opts{'copy'}) {  # always copy

could be changed to

  if (wndws() || $opts{'copy'} || -d <bin/windows>  {  # always copy

where <bin/windows> is determined by kpathsea.


Reinhard Kotucha                            Phone: +49-511-3373112
Marschnerstr. 25
D-30167 Hannover                    mailto:reinhard.kotucha at

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