[tex-live] TL and win32

Reinhard Kotucha reinhard.kotucha at web.de
Fri Dec 22 02:47:48 CET 2006

>>>>> "Staszek" == Staszek Wawrykiewicz <staw at gust.org.pl> writes:

  > Simply, we do not have *-sys programs for win32, [...]

It seems that I can't convince you.  Let us continue the discussion at
the next TeX conference.

  > That's more simple, understandable _for win32 users_ [...]

My opinion is that Windows users are not more stupid than UNIX users
and they can actually do the same things.  If you install a Windows
program you are asked several questions.  You can say 'yes' or 'no'
but you do not always understand the question.  A colleague told me
that he refuses to use PDF because it is not idiot proof.  He had been
asked whether to "embed all fonts" but he did not know what it actually
means in practice.  He said 'no' and ran into trouble.  Problems like
this can be solved easily.  I'm pretty sure that almost every Windows
user is able to build a customized Linux kernel.  The Linux kernel
configuration is a very good example:  If you press the 'help' button
you get a detailed description ending with a sentence "If you don't
understand what we are talking about, say 'yes'" (or 'no').

Windows users are not more stupid than UNIX users, all the problems
they have depend on the software (and the installers) they use.  Let
us take Windows users serious and improve the software if necessary.

  > 2. I'm not going to decide what is installed by regular GS
  > distribution, I just install it and use (on win32 Gs is installed
  > without setting PATH and any other variable, please note that),

The problem is that the gs installer for win32 is broken.  It does not
install all files properly.  Maybe the installer for gs-7.07 had been
broken too, but Fabrice fixed all the problems.  He replaced many
batch files by .exe files.

The question is whether Fabrice's programs are still working with
gs-8.54.  Meanwhile the meaning of -dNOSAFER had been changed and
a new option -dDELAYSAFER had been introduced.  I suppose that if the
batch files provided by Ghostscript are available many problems can
be avoided.

A few months ago a colleague used ps2eps and got wrong BoundingBoxes.
I had no time to find out what went wrong but it would be nice to have
ps2epsi.bat in PATH too.  Hence I think that it makes a lot of sense
to install all the batch files.

  > 3. I do not remove any script (or any other part) from Gs. Again,
  > I proposed to install it *as is* distributed (easy to uninstall by
  > standard win32 way), so sorry, I'm not going to break anything.

The gs installer obviously doesn't install eveything properly.  You
break everything if you use it.

  > Hmm... Let me continue my enumeration:

  > 4. Gs is an external program for TL, but needed for some batch
  > tasks; for TL we need to provide PATH to the core Gs binaries and
  > GS_LIB variable, as many our programs use Gs in batch mode,
  > nothing more

Ok, I don't expect anything else.

  > 5. users can have Gs already installed

I hope that they have TeXLive/bin/<platform> as the first entry in
PATH, otherwise we can't guarantee anything.

  > 6. it should be installed only on demand (see 5.)

Of couse.

  > 7. Gs can be easily uninstalled; the standard installer does
  > allow it (see 3.)  

The problem is that the standard installer doesn't work properly.

  > 8. batch files and other scripts distributed with Gs are out of
  > our interest (I consider them rather as mostly sketches for
  > advanced users, even the most valuable for TeX users, like
  > ps2pdf.bat, needs some insight and I use it completely changed and
  > simplified); please still have in mind that Gs installed natively
  > doesn't add the PATH etc.

No, they are definitely not "out of our interest".  You probably did
not needded them yourself.

  >> The fonts are inside the lib directory.  It is sufficient to
  >> point the GS_LIB variable to the lib directory and you don't have
  >> to care about a font directory.

  > well, we can organise what we want, only having in mind TL's
  > perspective...

Of course.  I always have TeXLive in mind and I know that ghostscript
(not only the installer, see below) is broken.

  > Fine by me, but I'm against replacing all Gs standard fonts by our
  > (still having in mind that Gs is all-purpose, independent program,
  > which can be unistalled and replaced by more newer version). I'm
  > not sure if fonts you proposed (removing btw. all standard ones,
  > as you did, see 3.)  are enough fine or better :-). "standard"
  > fonts distributed with Gs8.54 contains e.g. cyrillic glyphs by
  > Valek Flipov.

I think that there is a good reason for my decision to provide the
original URW fonts instead of the broken fonts provided by

It's nice that Valek Flipov added cyrillic glyphs but that's useless
because he didn't change /FontName and /UniqueID in the font files.

The Type1 specification clearly sais that there should not be two
fonts with the same /FontName and /UniqueID.

The fonts provided by Ghostscript are completely broken.

Please note that pdftex replaces fonts in included graphics files.
What do you think will happen with the broken fonts provided by gs?

  >> These are the fonts mentioned in the original GS Fontmap but some
  >> of them are not provided by GS.
  > Sorry, my task is to make TL working, not changing Gs.

The problem is that the gs installer doesn't work properly.


Reinhard Kotucha			              Phone: +49-511-4592165
Marschnerstr. 25
D-30167 Hannover	                      mailto:reinhard.kotucha at web.de
Microsoft isn't the answer. Microsoft is the question, and the answer is NO.

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