no appropriate script or program found: fmtutil

Akira Kakuto kakuto at
Tue Nov 7 09:30:37 CET 2023

On 2023/11/07 0:15, Yihui Xie wrote:
> Hi,
> Since about three weeks ago, I have been receiving reports that contain the
> error message "no appropriate script or program found: fmtutil" from
> Windows users when calling `fmtutil-sys.exe --all`, e.g.,
> (you can search for the error message on this page to see other similar
> reports)
>>From my limited understanding, the error seems to be from this line:
> The variable `progname` is `fmtutil` (fmtutil-sys.exe -> fmtutil-sys ->
> fmtutil), but none of the extensions in `extlist` works because only
> `fmtutil.exe` exists (but `extlist` doesn't include `.exe`):
> I don't really
> understand Lua, and I'm not sure if my diagnosis is correct.
> Another issue that might be relevant (apologies if not) is that calling
> executables by their short paths (Windows 8+3 names) doesn't work, as I
> mentioned to Norbert last week:
> That
> is, executing FMTUTI~1.EXE doesn't work, although it's a valid path name on
> Windows. In this case, `progname` would be `FMTUTI~1`, which understandably
> can't be found. If possible, the path should be converted to its canonical
> form beforehand. I'm not sure if this was a recent change, but I started to
> receive this type of report only recently.
> Thanks!

I don't understand details, but I can say one thing.
TeX Live for Windows does not support install directory
with non-ascii characters, that is, install directory
name should be 7bit ascii. Thus, TeX Live for Windows
installed under c:/Users/username/..., where username
contains non-ascii characters, does not work.
(1) open a command prompt window as an administrator
(2) go to c:\Users :
     cd /d c:\Users
(3) create a symbolic link of username:
     mklink /D newname username
     here, newname is a suitable name with 7bit ascii
     characters without spaces
(4) change username by newname for TeX Live binaries
     in PATH variable :


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