MetaType1 in TeX Live

Reinhard Kotucha reinhard.kotucha at
Tue Jun 4 00:51:42 CEST 2019

On 2019-06-02 at 18:58:59 -0700, Boris Veytsman wrote:

 > RK> From: Reinhard Kotucha <reinhard.kotucha at>
 > RK> Date: Mon, 3 Jun 2019 02:44:12 +0200
 > RK> If MetaType1 is supposed to work out of the box in TeX Live on all
 > RK> platforms we need an awk binary for Windows.  ATM it's easier to use
 > Awk scripts are easily translated to Perl, and we do have Perl in
 > the Windows distribution.

Hi Boris,
do you have automatic translation in mind?  I tried

  $ a2p mp2pf.awk >
  syntax error in file mp2pf.awk at line 360
  Translation aborted due to syntax errors.

  $ a2p pf2mt1.awk >
  Please check my work on the 50 lines I've marked with "#???".
  The operation I've selected may be wrong for the operand types.

I doubt that there is a syntax error in mp2pf.awk, it's more likely
that a2p doesn't parse the file properly.

However, we already have packages written in other languages than Perl
or Lua in TL.  pdfjam, for instance, is a set of shell scripts.
Though I personally prefer that everything works the same way on all
platforms, I don't mind if Windows users have to install a program
externally in order to execute some scripts which are only needed by a
few experts.

I just looked into the gawk package provided by Eli Zaretskii

It's dynamically linked and comes with a few awk scripts.  If it can
be linked statically and the scripts are not needed it wouldn't be a
big deal to include a binary into TL.

BTW, there is an undocumented feature in the Ghostscript distribution
for Windows I maintain for TL:


This is a script written by Nelson Beebe decades ago.  It's buried in
the Ghostscript sources but I thought that it can't hurt to make it
available to users somehow.  Well, Windows users have to install awk
in order to use it.

But as I said before, if we really want to create a TL package which
can be used out of the box we should ask Jacko which version he


Reinhard Kotucha                            Phone: +49-511-3373112
Marschnerstr. 25
D-30167 Hannover                    mailto:reinhard.kotucha at

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