[OS X TeX] Error: I can't write on file '(name)'

Alain Schremmer schremmer.alain at gmail.com
Fri Mar 9 23:17:32 CET 2012

Several---completely uneventful---years later:

I finally switched to Leopard and installed MacTeX which came with  
TeXLive-2010 and, sure enough, the first thing that happened when I  
finally got back to work is the dreaded "Error: I can't write on file  
'(name)' "

(1) 	After spending several hours going back to the thread and to the  
terminal to change "openout_any = p" to "openout_any = r" in "/usr/ 
local/texlive/2010/texmf/web2c/texmf.cnf", I finally got things  
running again.

Here is the file organization I am using which I guess is what the  
"paranoid" option was preventing:

The source file 2.tex is in a folder called Text-contents which starts  
as follows:

> %!TEX root = ../Text-controls/\jobname.tex
> \chapter{Early Arithmetic Languages}
> etc

and then the corresponding root file 2.x is in a folder called Text- 
controls :

> \documentclass[11pt]{book}

> \usepackage{../StyleSheets/Preamble}
> \usepackage{../StyleSheets/GraphicsPaths}
> \begin{document}
> 	\addtocounter{page}{0}
> 	\addtocounter{chapter}{\jobname-1}
> 	\include{../Text-contents/\jobname}
> \end{document}

So, my question, my gripe, is why, out of the box and without warning,  
does openout in "/usr/local/texlive/2010/texmf/web2c/texmf.cnf" have  
to be "paranoid" rather than merely "restricted"? In other words, why  
"disallow going to parent directories ..."?

(2)	In addition, now I am running in another (related?) problem: even  
though the console states

> Output written on 2.pdf (11 pages, 1545666 bytes).
> SyncTeX written on 2.synctex.gz
> Transcript written on 2.log.

the pdf sometimes comes out completely blank.

When I open the pdf with Preview, though, it is as it should be and,  
after that, typesetting seems to yield a non-blank pdf but not always.

Here is the end of the log:

> Output written on 2.pdf (11 pages, 1545666 bytes).
> PDF statistics:
>  270 PDF objects out of 1000 (max. 8388607)
>  182 compressed objects within 2 object streams
>  0 named destinations out of 1000 (max. 500000)
>  66 words of extra memory for PDF output out of 10000 (max. 10000000)

Hopeful regards

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