[tex-live] TL2005 and windvi

gnwiii at gmail.com gnwiii at gmail.com
Wed May 10 16:29:45 CEST 2006

On 5/9/06, Harriet B Borton <bortonh at rpi.edu> wrote:
> Thanks, Karl, when I get a little time, I'll look at it. I'm curious
> as to how it's defined.
> Karl Berry wrote:
> >
> >     file containing "gs_locate" and came up empty.
> >
> > I hope/surmise it is somewhere inside source-win32.zip, which is in the
> > distribution, or on CTAN, etc:
> > http://tug.ctan.org/tex-archive/systems/texlive/Source/
> >
> > I just didn't unpack it and grep it ...

This sort of interface needs to be documented.  Many tools rely on
ghostscript, and I'll wager that they don't all look for it the same
way.  On Win9x you couldn't expect every 3rd party tool to have a
separate entry in the PATH because there were hard limits (at least in
some apps).   Some perl scripts search the PATH for
likely names:

>From pdfcrop.pl we get:
### string constants for Ghostscript run
# get Ghostscript command name
my $GS = "gs";
$GS = "gs386"    if $^O =~ /dos/i;
$GS = "gsos2"    if $^O =~ /os2/i;
$GS = "gswin32c" if $^O =~ /mswin32/i;
$GS = "gswin32c" if $^O =~ /cygwin/i;

This list is missing "gsc", the linux shared library eqivalent to
gswin3c.  I'm pretty sure there are Win32 apps that find ghostscript
via the registry, as only TeX seems to need  the gs binaries to be
found via the PATH.

What I would like to see (once the Win9x diehards switch to linux):

1.  a list of 3rd party tools that may be needed in order to use TL. 
Which tools are required will depend on the actual tasks to be

       GNUWin32: sed, awk, tar, pax, bzip2, zip, ...

    Image processing:
       samp2p and tif22

    Interpreted languages:

     Editor that supports TeX:
        Emacs or Xemacs, ...

     File viewers:
       Adobe Reader
       GSview or evince or ...
       Web browser

2.  the standard way these tools are used is via the PATH, using
OS-dependent names, but otherwise the same code on unix/linux/Win32. 
[could win9x still be supported with batch files or .exe covers in the
bin/win32 directory?]

3.  tools that use utilities from the above list should indicate when
a failure results from not finding the required tool with a suitable
configuration, e.g.:

  XXX: unable to locate a working <YYY>.  This is a 3rd party tool
that should be available for installation using your package manager
(linux) or as a self-installing archive (OS X or Win32) from CTAN.  In
some cases failures may result if the installed version of <YYY> is an
old version or was not configured to enable <feature> required by

  XXX: unable to locate a working <YYY>.  Except on Win32 this is a
standard tool that should have been installed with your OS.   It is
highly likely that your OS installation is damaged.  On Win32 a
self-installing archive can be downloaded from CTAN or the GNUWin32

George N. White III <aa056 at chebucto.ns.ca>
Head of St. Margarets Bay, Nova Scotia

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