[OS X TeX] What kind of operation is TeXing? (concerning hardware)

Frank STENGEL fstengel at mac.com
Thu Feb 3 19:48:19 CET 2005

Le 3 févr. 05, à 16:40, Steffen Wolfrum a écrit :


> What kind of operation is TeXing (i.e. running texexec --pdf in the 
> terminal)?
> What kind of components are important for this (fast processor, lots 
> of RAM,
> fast harddrive)?

TeXing uses a bit of everything. A lot of disk because there are many 
files associated with a run: formats, document classes, styles, font 
files etc. A lot of processor power to churn out pages fast and, well, 
OSX/Darwin only starts to be happy with about 512Mb of memory.

But, very honlestly, on my 867MHz 12" powerbook with 384Mb of memory 
and a rather slow disk, TeX is fastish. I did not really time it, but a 
60 pages document with a few tables takes about 15 seconds until 
preview (a lot of that time is used by the initial loading of files and 
the final inclusion of fonts). Usually my documents are much shorter, 
about 4 to 6 pages, and typeset in far less time: less than 5s .So a 
mac mini is definitely sufficient for this.

> And is a Mac Mini (1.42 MHz) a good idea, or do you recommend an other 
> machine
> (at a comparable price)?

Depends on what hardware you already have (screen/keyboard) and how 
much desk real estate you plan on sacrificing for the computer. 
Basically if you already own a screen and a keyboard/mouse and want to 
chuck the old computer, then the mini is very worth considering.

One caveat is that while the Mac mini is rather cheap, there is hardly 
any room for expansion (just memory, BT and Airport)
Frank STENGEL (fstengel<at>mac.com)

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