[tex-live] Stable vs. Unstable/Testing Update Repositories?

Manuel Pégourié-Gonnard mpg at elzevir.fr
Wed Feb 24 13:39:17 CET 2010

Robin Fairbairns a écrit :
> Manuel Pégourié-Gonnard <mpg at elzevir.fr> wrote:
>> George N. White III a écrit :
>>> TL is not big by today's standards.
>> It is big by CTAN's standards.
> you contrast the public and the private space.
> buying a new computer for my wife, recently, i found that a 1.5tbyte
> main disc on the machine was acceptably priced.  if she was into tex,
> two complete copies of tl would hardly be noticed.
This tends to prove one thing: using tlmgr's autobackup option is most probably
the way to go. That way, space is used on the big unexpensive hard drive of the
user, while precious space/bandwidth of CTAN mirrors are saved.

The problem with this solution is, you still need to educate users so that they
activated this option and know how to use the backups. And educating users is
the most difficult task in system administration :-)

Claire, I understand your request and I think it's reasonable (that's the main
reason why I love Debian : unstable/testing/stable). People have already
explained why it wouldn't be easy to do this (though I have a few ideas on this
point, but we'll discuss them internally) but I'd like to add another argument.
You'd still have to educate users not to use the unstable repo. Or we could make
"stable" the default, but then we'd have fewer testers on unstable, so bugs
would be more likely to go unnoticed to stable.

So, I agree that the solution probably lies on the user's side, either:
- not updating at all
- or updating only specific packages when they know they need newer versions (eg
for pstricks or other regularly-enhanced packages)
- or using the autobackup option of tlmgr to be able to unwind the problematic
updates when they happen
- or using more elaborated solutions like having two distros on their hard
drive, or manually backing up their entire distro before upgrading, etc.


More information about the tex-live mailing list