[tex-live] texmf.cnf paths for format files

Norbert Preining preining at logic.at
Thu Jan 18 15:01:05 CET 2007

Hi Sanjoy!

On Don, 18 Jan 2007, Sanjoy Mahajan wrote:
> > TEXFORMATS = .;$TEXMF/web2c/{$engine,}
> In my regular setup (texlive 2005 Debian packages + Norbert's Context
> packages), I have it here:
>   $ kpsewhich pdftex.fmt
>   /var/lib/texmf/web2c/pdftex.fmt

Yes, but we are talking about TeX Live 2006/7.

> > $ kpsewhich --engine=pdftex pdftex.fmt
> > /Users/jonathan/.texlive2007/texmf-var/web2c/pdftex/pdftex.fmt
> pdftex doesn't need to go into an engine-specific directory, since the
> 'pdftex' specifies the engine and there's no danger of duplication.

After some discussion fmtutil was patches so that ALL (!!! *all*)
formats go into engine specific directories in TL2007.

> won't find the context formats.  On the other hand, few naive users
> will be trying the above command.  
> > TEXFORMATS = .;$TEXMF/web2c/{$engine,}//
> This alternative seems a bit dangerous because it introduces
> indeterminism into the searching.  Sure, ASCII ordering will make a
> choice, at least if there's an ls-R file (because 'ls' does ascii
> ordering).  But without an ls-R file, I'm not sure what order the
> filesystem will be searched.  Maybe the kpathsea gurus can say, but

First web2c/$engine//, then web2c//

For Jonathan: I would say that this makes sense, I don't fear that
someone will put loads of other stuff into foobar/web2c...

> An alternative fix so that 'kpsewhich pdftex.fmt' works is for fmtutil
> to place pdftex.fmt in web2c/ directly.  But I'm not sure how easy
> that change is to do now in the release process.

Too late now. We decided to go for all or nothing in engine-dirs.

Best wishes


Dr. Norbert Preining <preining at logic.at>                    Università di Siena
Debian Developer <preining at debian.org>                         Debian TeX Group
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