# Relative paths with windows path separator does not work in TeXlive2019.

Taylor, P P.Taylor at rhul.ac.uk
Fri Jul 26 11:15:20 CEST 2019

Kirill Balunov wrote:
Philip thank you! I agree with your comments about ambiguity, also TeX --help has a comment about starting with a backslash, I'm ok with it. But there is a tiny little dot (full stop) in the beginning of my examples, and I expect it should be enough to dispel ambiguity -> I worte TeX .\some\file.tex and not  TeX \some\file.tex without a dot, does this make sense to you?

It makes perfect sense, Kirill, but unfortunately it does not (cannot) do what you expect (or would wish).  "TeX .\some\file.tex" will be parsed as :

TeX (operating system command)
"." (file to be processed by TeX)
"\some" (TeX command)
"\file" ( – ditto – )
".tex" (characters to be typeset).

You can see that this is true by typing (at your operating system's command-line interpreter prompt)

TeX .\show\the.tex

Assuming that a file "..tex" does not exist within TeX's input path, you should receive :

TeX .\show\the.tex
This is TeX, Version 3.14159265 (TeX Live 2019/W32TeX) (preloaded format=tex)
! I can't find file .'.
\show
<*> .\show
\the.tex
(Press Enter to retry, or Control-Z to exit)
Please type another input file name:

Now create "..tex" in your current directory and populate it with the single line "\relax".  Now try again.  This time you should receive :

TeX .\show\the.tex
This is TeX, Version 3.14159265 (TeX Live 2019/W32TeX) (preloaded format=tex)
(./..tex)
> \the=\the.
<*> .\show\the
.tex
?

and if you then enter "s" (for scroll mode) followed by "\end" you should get a DVI file containing the typeset characters ".tex"
Philip Taylor
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