[tex-live] So far.....expensive failure

Denis Bitouzé dbitouze at wanadoo.fr
Sat Feb 16 12:53:54 CET 2013

Le samedi 16/02/13 à 11h57,
Reinhard Kotucha <reinhard.kotucha at web.de> a écrit :

>  > With rsync for instance?
> Yes, or wget.  You only have to copy it once for each LaTeX course,
> presumably once a year.  Rsync is useful if you update regularly.

OK, thanks.

>  > OK but still has the inconvenient of local network install already
>  > mentioned and needs this "change the repository" step that should
>  > be revert afterwards.
> Yes, but it's one option, at least.


>  > Does this need to change afterwards the repository to CTAN mirror
>  > for later updates?
> No, after installation the default repository is still
>   http://mirror.ctan.org/systems/texlive/tlnet
> but it's recommended to select a reliable mirror nearby.

I was pretty sure it was recommended to instead let the mirror that by
itself would choose a reliable mirror nearby, but not always the same.
>  > > This works on all systems, though Mac users might prefer MacTeX.
>  > > I don't know much about MacTeX, but if it can be installed from
>  > > a DVD I suppose that it can be installed from a USB stick as
>  > > well, at least if the directory layout is the same as on the
>  > > DVD.  
>  > 
>  > Some of my students have succesfully installed MacTeX I provided
>  > on an USB stick.
> If they copied the content of the ISO image to a USB stick, they
> certainly installed the old stuff.  What one could try is to replace
> the content of the texlive directory by the content of tlnet.

I see your point.

>  I would expect that the MacTeX installer will use the up-to-date
> files in texlive/archives then.

Could be nice; do they read this list?

>  > >  > (I specified a /complete/ installer because I personally
>  > >  > prefer the students to run "install-tl-advanced" than
>  > >  > "install-tl", as they are default options I wouldn't recommend
>  > >  > to beginners.)
>  > > 
>  > > Which options do you have in mind?
>  > 
>  > As already answered to Lars, I always recommend to run the
>  > install-tl-advanced as an administrator and change the two options:
>  > 
>  >   1. "Install for all users" from "No" to "Yes".
> Ok.  The default is "No" because one can't know in advance whether a
> user has the necessary permissions for a system-wide installation.

Indeed: for general cases, I understand the default choice but, during
my LaTeX courses, either students own a personal computer and install TL
on them (laptops or, at home, desktops) or use the ones provided by our
university and don't install it. Hence my advise to run:

  1. install-tl-advanced (instead of install-tl),

  2. as administrator.

>  >   2. Install TeXworks (I don't remember the exact label of this
>  >   option). I explain myself: though I am an Emacs user, I know
>  >   TeXworks is very powerful but, IMHO, it is not very helpful for
>  >   beginners as it requires them to know and remember macro and
>  >   environment names (TeXstudio, for instance is easier for
>  >   beginners).
> I usually recommend TeXworks to beginners *because* they have to
> remember macro and environment names.  Former or later it's
> advantageous to have them learned.

If the users don't give up before: if newbies have the impression it is
impossible to use LaTeX without remember all these names, probably they
will return very quickly to a word processor.

>  There must be a reason that we both are using Emacs...

Okay, but we are using a lot our computer (in general) and LaTeX (in
particular): the average user could stay few weeks, even months between
two LaTeX usages.

> Using TeXworks means to learn LaTeX as it's described in the
> literature.

The IDE should not replace literature: it just assist you to fluid the
flow of writing and avoid mispelling.

>  This is a big advantage, especially in the long term.
> Admittedly, there's a lot to learn at the beginning,

And to type, not only at the beginning.

> but it's easy enough once one have understood the concepts.

Understand concepts doesn't let you know all macros and environment
names by heart. It doesn't prevent you misspell them.

>  Furthermore, there is a lot of stuff which is not accessible from
> IDEs, hence I wouldn't rely on them at all.

Most of IDEs let you add your own macros and environments names, with
associated shortcuts. And, OK, using IDEs doesn't mean you'll never
have to read literature for some rarely used macros.

>  >   Well I could let TeXworks be installed but, often, it becomes the
>  >   default program for .tex files even if another preferred TeX IDE
>  >   is installed afterwards.
> I think that it's easy enough to change the file name associations
> manually if necessary.

But that's an extra step often frighten newbies.


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