[OS X TeX] TeXShop and Cloud Computing

Nitecki, Zbigniew H. Zbigniew.Nitecki at tufts.edu
Mon Oct 10 19:55:04 CEST 2011

I have had lots of responses to my original query (Question 1 in the attached email), with different kinds of advice.  The idea that I should keep a copy of my macro file in the same folder with each document I have seems both wasteful (beyond a certain point, dropbox costs money) and against what I have been told by my computing-savvy colleagues is best practice:  namely, that you keep one copy and point to it in all places where you use it.  I need to have the macro files available (for possible modification) no matter which machine I am working from, so they clearly need to reside on dropbox, not on one of my machines.
I am not particularly used to using command line from terminal, but have gotten very used to the GUI interface.  I asked my IT guy how to make the symbolic link to the files on dropbox, and he suggested moving the folder icon onto my desktop (the resulting image is, according to him, a symbolic link---although in view of Herb's comment below it may be just an icon) and then putting it into the library where the macro files used to be.  I tried that, but still get a "cannot find file" error.  So I reverted to my old system: I have a folder called Macros which contains all my macro files, and it lives at ~/Library/texmf/tex/latex.  Used this way, I can compile my tex files fine.  What can I do to put the Macros folder in dropbox so that when I try to compile tex files in TeXShop I will be able to use the macro files?  (Or do I need to make an individual symbolic link for each .sty file inside Macros?)

Zbigniew Nitecki
Department of Mathematics
Tufts University
Medford, MA 02155

Office    (617)627-3843
Dept.    (617)627-3234
Dept. fax    (617)627-3966

On Oct 1, 2011, at 14:48, Herbert Schulz wrote:

On Oct 1, 2011, at 11:29 AM, Nitecki, Zbigniew H. wrote:

I use Texshop on two different computers---a home laptop (MacBook Pro) and an office iMac, and have had some problems trying to use Folders Synchronizer to avoid carrying my laptop when I walk to my office.  The recent purchase of an iPad 2 prompted me to investigate using Tex Touch and Tex Timer to be able to work on tex files from the iPad while traveling, and in particular I have started using DropBox instead of synchronization to have access from different computers to a single set of files.  This seems to work a lot better than synchronizing.

Which brings me to my questions.

1.I have several .sty files with a mass of custom macros that I use in all of my work.  On my laptop and on my iMac, these reside in my user ->Library->texmf->tex (or bibtex)->latex  folder.  I understand that these are now hidden in Lion;  if I use the search function (the magnifying glass on my tool bar) I can find about 15 different files with the correct name, but can't find the pathname to any of them.  Obviously there is only one I want to use, and that is the one which TeXShop calls up.  How do I find it?


The ~/Library/ folder is hidden, by default, in Lion but you can certainly still get to it. The ``accepted'' method is to hold the Option key while you click Finder's Go Menu and you will see an entry to get to ~/Library/. The second is to remove the ``hidden'' bit so it becomes visible in the Finder again. To do that run the command

chflags nohidden ~/Library

and you'll see it in you HOME folder (and to hide it again use ``hidden'' instead of ``nohidden'').

2. Even more to the point, I want to put these files in DropBox so that again I have only one copy to modify when I need to.  Where do I put them in Drop Box so that TeXShop will find them when I \usepackage them?  (of course, TeXShop resides in two copies, one on my laptop and one on my iMac).
And can that be designed so that these files get used when I am using TeXShop on a file that didn't come from Drop Box as well?

TeXShop doesn't do the ``finding'' but the best thing to do would be to put the files in a folder in your drop box and make a symbolic link (NOT the same as an alias) to that folder in ~/Library/texmf/tex/latex/.

Good Luck,

Herb Schulz
(herbs at wideopenwest dot com)

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