[OS X TeX] OS X TeX newbie needs help installing TeX on non-boot volume

Bernhard Barkow bb at creativeeyes.at
Sun Sep 11 15:10:47 CEST 2005

On 11.09.2005, at 13:57, Anthony Morton wrote:
>>> i-Installer (and other tetex distributions) install inside the / 
>>> usr/local directory (not as an application bundle or such).
>> I know.  And as I say, I want to make it install the software  
>> somewhere else.
> As someone mentioned, probably the most successful way of doing  
> this, while keeping everything organised in the way expected under  
> the Unix architecture, is to map the entire '/usr/local' file  
> hierarchy to the desired location on your other volume.  The  
> easiest way to do this is with a symbolic link.
> Before you install *anything* whatsoever, go into Terminal and type  
> 'ls /usr'.  This lists all the (visible) files in your '/usr'  
> directory.  Make sure there's no folder called 'local' - if there  
> is then something's already been installed there and you'll  
> probably want to zap it and re-install it later.  Assuming there's  
> no 'local' directory and your other volume is mounted (called  
> something like /Volumes/otherapps), do the following:
> 1. Create a folder called 'unix' on your 'otherapps' volume - this  
> can be done in Terminal as
>     sudo mkdir /Volumes/otherapps/unix
> The 'sudo' bit ensures that the folder is owned by 'root' (the  
> super-user), as all high-level folders should be.  Note that you  
> need to type your account password to run commands as the super-user.
> 2. Make a symbolic link to /usr/local from this new folder:
>     sudo ln -s /Volumes/otherapps/unix /usr/local
> The folder 'unix' on the other volume will now replicate a Unix- 
> like local file hierarchy, which will automatically be used as an  
> installation location by Unix-like utilities such as i-Installer.   
> You can put any other Mac-like apps, documents, etc. on this other  
> volume as long as you leave the 'unix' folder alone.
> Of course, the folder doesn't have to be called 'unix' or even be  
> at the top level on your 'otherapps' volume, as long as you specify  
> the correct path to the folder at step 2 above.  If you ever need  
> to wipe and reinstall your boot volume, you'll need to remember to  
> recreate the link - this just means typing the command at step 2  
> once again after reinstalling.

Just for confirmation, I did exactly that with only the teTeX  
directory mapped to /Volumes/Beta/usr/local/teTeX in order to not  
interfere with any applications relying on hard-coded paths, and it  
works perfectly.
By the way, I tried something similar with mapping /var/tmp to  
another partition when I was running out of space on my OS partition,  
which caused all application installers built using Installer Vise to  
crash, although the command-line path using the symlink (/var/tmp)  
was the same as before; some apps seem to be unable to resolve symlinks.

> ...
> (Having said all that, the 'ideal Unix way' to go about this would  
> probably be to define /usr/local as a 'mount point', and have the  
> other volume 'automount' at this location in the file system,  
> rather than be referenced indirectly via a symbolic link.  But  
> explaining how to set this up requires more knowledge of Unix  
> administration than I'm confident about giving advice on.)

Sounds great, too, but as long as the simple symlink works, I'll  
stick with that... :-) (especially since the OSX way of automounting  
seems to be based on a different concept than other Unixes, at least  
I did not find out yet how it really works)


_________________________________ Bernhard Barkow __
__                                                __
__ mail bb at creativeeyes.at __ www.creativeeyes.at __
__ Phone  +43 699 12660415 __ Fax   +43 1 8775334 __
___________________ gpg key ID _ A89F09C45921020D __

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