[tex-live] Feature request for TL 2014 (or later): Easier installation of local/experimental packages

Karl Berry karl at freefriends.org
Thu Feb 13 23:58:52 CET 2014

Hi Ulrike,

    Is it safe to have more than one tree in TEXMFHOME and TEXMFLOCAL?

Yes.  From texmf.cnf:

% Per-user texmf tree(s) -- organized per the TDS, as usual.  To define
% more than one per-user tree, set this to a list of directories in
% braces, as described above.  (This used to be HOMETEXMF.)  ~ expands
% to %USERPROFILE% on Windows, $HOME otherwise.
TEXMFHOME = ~/texmf

Of course TEXMFHOME doesn't have to use ~ at all.
And you don't have to change any texmf.cnf; environment variables are
still read first.

Using the existing variables seems far simpler to me than inventing a
new dedicated variable, new tlmgr actions, and all else that is being
discussed.  This is very advanced usage you are talking about; there
isn't going to be any simple way.  The stuff you are describing with
miktex does not seem simple to me.

Thus, overall, it seems to me that a few shell scripts that you write
for yourself to do what you want to do seems a lot more likely to have a
satisfactory result than our trying to invent "generic" functionality
for it.

On the other hand, if all we do is add one more variable to the default
TEXMF that users can play with, say TEXMFPROJECT, that seems like it
should be essentially harmless.

(Another approach would be to use not just a tree, but a repository, but
I guess you already rejected that.)


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