[tex-live] biber in TeX Live

François Charette firmicus at ankabut.net
Wed Apr 21 22:49:00 CEST 2010

On 21/04/2010 16:59, Jindrich Novy wrote:
> Hi Robin, Victor,
> On Wed, Apr 21, 2010 at 09:57:20AM -0400, Victor Ivrii wrote:
>> On Wed, Apr 21, 2010 at 9:34 AM, Robin Fairbairns
>> <Robin.Fairbairns at cl.cam.ac.uk>  wrote:
>>> Jindrich Novy<jnovy at redhat.com>  wrote:
>>>> I have another request from Fedora TeX Live user who would like to see
>>>> biber in TeX Live:
>>>> https://bugzilla.redhat.com/show_bug.cgi?id=584063
>>>> What do you think? Could biber coexist with bibtex in TeX Live?
>>> surely, linux distros are in a better position to provide a separate
>>> biber (rpm|deb) than tl is to provide one of its packages?
>>> the problem is the large number of perl dependencies, which is surely
>>> "run of the mill" for you, but definitely stressful for tl.
>>> and in any case, you could surely put a biber rpm on the road well
>>> before tl 2010 is likely to be released?
>>> robin
>> I compiled biber on MacOSX and it was a bit tedious and annoying
>> experience as not only few perl modules biber depends on were missing
>> (it would be easy as biber can retrieve and install them on its own)
>> but they were depending on the modules which were also missing and ad
>> nauseum and  there biber could not help I was forced to go down.
>> I suspect that if TL includes biber it would be a full time job to
>> answer enquiries.
>> Victor
> Thanks for your opinions. I haven't had any experiences with biber so
> far so now I can at least guess why incorporating biber into TeX Live isn't
> too good idea.
> Thanks again!
> Jindrich

I concur with Alex and Robin (as well as Norbert's comments in the 
previous thread "Changes for 2010?"): Incorporating Biber in TeX Live is 
definitely not feasible for TL 2010 and would require absurdly 
disproportionate efforts from the part of the TL maintainers. However we 
(the two Biber devs) have plans to solve this issue, hopefully before TL 
2011. The idea is to ship a single script with embedded PAR archive that 
will contain all dependencies. The only requirement to run it will then 
be Perl 5.8.x or later (with core modules). For that we need to first 
setup a robust build environment that will work on all platforms 
supported by TL. This is not a trivial task, but it is feasible.

For the time being we indeed encourage distributors to package Biber 
separately if they can (as it is already done for instance in Arch 
Linux: http://aur.archlinux.org/packages.php?ID=36407). Having packages 
for Fedora and Debian/Ubuntu would be nice too.

I should also point out to Victor that most of the outstanding 
installation problems reported in the past have been resolved, 
especially those concerning  the dependency Text::BibTeX (and its 
underlying btparse library), whose most recent version on CPAN now 
installs smoothly on most platforms (it used to have been nearly 
impossible to install on Windows, and was sometimes problematic on Mac 
OSX too). So it is definitely worth trying again with version 0.53. 
(Don't forget to run ./Build installdeps after running "perl Build.PL": 
that takes care of automatically installing all dependencies). If you 
still encounter problems, you are very much encouraged to report them on 
the Biber User Forum on SF: 
http://sourceforge.net/projects/biblatex-biber/forums/forum/824416 . We 
will gladly help!

François Charette

-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://tug.org/pipermail/tex-live/attachments/20100421/c2c3db6b/attachment.html>

More information about the tex-live mailing list