[OS X TeX] Setting TEXINPUTS/BIBINPUTS on Catalina

Ettore Aldrovandi ealdrov at mail.math.fsu.edu
Sun Oct 18 19:42:03 CEST 2020

> On Oct 18, 2020, at 11:00, Herbert Schulz <herbs at wideopenwest.com> wrote:
>> On Oct 18, 2020, at 8:27 AM, Ettore Aldrovandi <ealdrov at math.fsu.edu> wrote:
>>> On Oct 18, 2020, at 08:51, Herbert Schulz <herbs at wideopenwest.com> wrote:
>>>> On Oct 18, 2020, at 3:27 AM, Martin Costabel <costabel at wanadoo.fr> wrote:
>>>> On 18/10/20 10:09, Joseph Wright wrote:
>>>>> I want to export
>>>>>   BIBINPUTS=~/Literature//;
>>>>> which I used to be able to do from my .bash_rc, but can't any more.
>>>> Try .zshrc instead. The default shell on catalina is zsh.
>>>> -- 
>>>> Martin
>>> Howdy,
>>> I think it's ~/.zprofile. I believe you can get it to source your .profile by putting the line
>>> [[ -e ~/.profile ]] && emulate sh -c 'source ~/.profile'
>>> in a ~/.zprofile file. If you were using a ~/.bash_profile you can copy it to ~/.profile or change the line.
>>> Personally, I'm most familiar with the bash shell so I made it my default. You then get an annoying notification that you should change to the zsh but there is a link which gives you a command (I don't remember what it is since you need only run it once) to get rid of that message. Aaahhh... back to familiar territory.
>> Hello,
>> better not use .zprofile. That’s for login shells.  So, if you run under an non-login shell, variables set there may not be picked up.
>> The best place is .zshenv, or, on the reasonable assumption that it makes sense to set BIBINPUTS for interactive shells, .zshrc is the place to go.
>> That being said:
>> 1. One can make the bash shell the default one (using the chsh command). But why? zsh is a better shell.
>> 2. I keep my unique source in
>> 		~/Library/texmf/bibtex/bib/
>>    as others have stated, and it’s picked up automatically.
>> —Ettore
> Howdy,


I think you are answering the wrong message.

I was merely pointing out that your suggestion to possibly put a value for BIBINPUTS (or any other environment variable meant for interactive use or on-the-fly reading) in .zprofile is incorrect. 

If you reread my message, I was also pointing out you don’t need to change BIBINPUTS at all, because, as other people have mentioned, putting the .bib in ~/Library/texmf/bibtex/bib is perfectly fine.

> Assuming you installed TeX Live using the MacTeX installer the environment isn't read from memory.


The point of the correction is the distinction between login and non login shells. And what happens when you launch the installer depends on how you do it.  But this is beside the point, because we are talking about maintenance of an already installed system, according to the original post.

> If you really want to change the variables use a texmf.cnf file stored in /usr/local/texlive/texmf-local/web2c which contains the changes. Make sure to run `sudo mktexlsr` after you add the file so the distribution will ``know'' about its presence.

It doesn’t apply to me, as I was not the one asking the question in the first place. However, if you do it right, you can change the TEXMF variables in the shell environment files, but you have to use the right ones, which aren’t .zprofile or .profile. In fact, depending on how zsh is setup, .zprofile may not get read at all. Ditto for .login. 

But I never had any need to change any variables in texlive/texmf-local/web2c/. 

> The best solution, though, is the symbolic link mentioned before.

Symlinking from something else somewhere is probably fine, but it hardly is the “best” solution, as you will be at the sync service mercy. But that’s a different conversation. 


Ettore Aldrovandi
Department of Mathematics, Florida State University
1017 Academic Way                *   http://www.math.fsu.edu/~ealdrov
Tallahassee, FL 32306-4510, USA * * aldrovandi at math dot fsu dot edu

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