[tex-live] script for LuaTeX font database updating

Reinhard Kotucha reinhard.kotucha at web.de
Thu Feb 25 22:40:45 CET 2010

On 25 February 2010 Khaled Hosny wrote:

 > On Thu, Feb 25, 2010 at 07:15:30PM +0100, Reinhard Kotucha wrote:
 > > On 25 February 2010 T T wrote:
 > >  > Single common script is better. For Unix acting on argv[0] is
 > >  > standard and allows the -sys version to be a symlink. For
 > >  > Windows I need --sys switch for our universal wrapper, because
 > >  > I can't alter argv[0] for scripts (well, for Lua script I
 > >  > could, but switch will be less hackish :).
 > > 
 > > Since there are already some -sys scripts we can't get rid of, I
 > > think it's worthwhile to consider whether it makes sense to
 > > follow this scheme, just that such programs behave similar.
 > I'd say we shouldn't keep repeating the mistakes of the past just
 > because we can't (or unwilling) to fix the old ones.

I don't think it's a mistake.  It was a design decision and the way it
was done is reasonable:

A few years ago there were no distinct config files for users.  A user
had to do everything manually if he had own fonts or own format
files.  The -sys programs were introduced in TeTeX-2.0, if I recall

The only difference between a system-wide and a per-user configuration
is that files are written to different directories.  Hence, the
obvious way to add the new functionality without revising the scripts
themselves was to add wrappers.  The scripts were thoroughly tested at
this time and providing just wrappers was the safest solution.  Thus I
think it was a good decision.

Regarding other scripts, I think that it's not a good idea to invent
other schemes because that would confuse people.  It's bad enough that
there is no unique scheme how to process command-line options and it's
annoying, for instance, that xpdf understands "-fullscreen" but not

As far as getnonfreefonts is concerned, I provide a -sys program
because I'm convinced that this is what people expect.  The reason
there is a --sys option is simply that I wrote the program before
thinking about how it can be invoked under Windows and I thought that
such an option can't hurt. 

I don't think that what we have in TeX Live is wrong.  Just a design
decision, not a mistake.


Reinhard Kotucha			              Phone: +49-511-3373112
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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