Opened 16 years ago

Closed 13 years ago

Last modified 10 years ago

#2480 closed task (fixed)

Switch from tetex to texlive

Reported by: Robert Daniels Owned by: Randy McMurchy
Priority: normal Milestone:
Component: BOOK Version: SVN
Severity: normal Keywords:


The tetex package is no longer being maintained. (see ).

The (former) maintainer recommends users switch to texlive ( ).

Change History (15)

comment:1 by dnicholson@…, 16 years ago

This is definitely the way to go, except there's on huge problem: it's really difficult to actually build from source. They really try to steer you to use the binaries. I looked at what they were doing in Fedora a while ago, and I think they are taking this shapshot:

and then throwing a ton of patches at it, including from upstream SVN. That's the only source tarball I've ever seen.

So, it would be awesome if someone did this, but it could be a huge PITA.

comment:2 by Robert Daniels, 15 years ago

Turns out the build itself is very simple. It comes with a script that takes care of configure, make, and make install. It does, however, use some strange directories for the install. It will take quite a number of switches, and possibly some other alterations, to get a sane install.

The real problem is the number of patches to apply against it. The devs only target 1 release per year, and that's a long time to build up a backlog of fixes. The next release is set for June, some 16-17 months since the previous release.

comment:3 by willimm, 15 years ago

Another thing, the 2008 source is compressed with LZMA. Another good reason to include LZMA-Utils in the book.

comment:4 by willimm, 15 years ago

A great canadate for 6.4. I MEAN IT.

comment:5 by Randy McMurchy, 15 years ago

Owner: changed from blfs-book@… to Randy McMurchy
Status: newassigned

I've done a bit of work with this package. I'm using the most recent sources (20080816 and the corresponding texmf tarball). I managed to get it installed without any patches (not counting the DESTDIR patch I created). I did need 3 seds so the directory structure was a bit more sane:

sed -i 's|/texmf-dist/scripts|/share&|' texk/tex4htk/

sed -i 's| texmf| share/texmf|' texk/texlive/

sed -i 's|var/tmp/texfonts|var/cache/texfonts|' texk/make/

I also had to hand-modify /usr/share/texmf/web2c/texmf.cnf to include 'share' into the directory path of some the texmf vars. I could make a sed, but it was after the fact, and after fking with it for two days I'm a bit burned out.

It seems to work fine using some rudimentary Tex operations from the libgcrypt package. My destdir patch is in the LFS repo:

The configure command I used is:

./configure --prefix=/usr \

--bindir=/usr/bin/TeX \ --libdir=/usr/lib \ --sysconfdir=/etc/livetex \ --with-x \ --with-system-ncurses \ --with-system-zlib \ --with-system-pnglib \ --with-system-t1lib \ --with-system-freetype2 \ --with-freetype2-libdir=/usr/lib \ --with-freetype2-include=/usr/include \ --with-system-gd \ --enable-gf \ --disable-a4 \ --without-texinfo \ --without-xindy \ --without-luatex \

configure.log 2>&1

Then make and make install (I used DESTDIR to install).

Counting the texmf tarball and DESTDIR it used about 4GB of space during the installation. It's huge.

If we can get some folks (Alexander!) to test it out, we could get it into the book. It includes the cm-super fonts that is an addon in the books' TeTeX instructions.

comment:6 by Randy McMurchy, 15 years ago

Something else worth mentioning:

The default installation (without passing a configure parameter) will overwrite all the PSUtils files in /usr/bin.

comment:7 by willimm, 14 years ago

Yes, this is kinda late, but in case you weren't watching: TeXLive version 2009 is out. Some notes:

  1. The files are now compressed in the XZ file format. It's for a good reason too, as even when compressed with XZ, the texmf tarball alone is around a gigabyte! Now it's a good time to think about replacing LZMA-Utils with XZ-Utils
  2. You have to add --disable-native-texlive-build to configure, else TeXLive won't build with the --with-system-* options.
  3. Upstream recommends that you use the --with-tex-banner when building for a inpedent distro like BLFS. The one I uses was:
--with-tex-banner='TeX Live 2009/BLFS'
  1. If building without X, you must put --without-x on the configure line, else texlive won't compile.
  2. As before, lots and lots of programs were installed, taking up a lot of space.

That's it for my notes.

comment:8 by willimm, 13 years ago

More notes, to follow up my last ones on 2009. The version I used for my latest BLFS build was Arch Linux's 2010 version (which can be gotten at, I used a modified version of their PKGBUILD, removing all of the special package management stuff and removal of Alpha/Omega), and I created a working setup using that version. Just some more notes:

  1. This version requires XZ-Utils and Unzip to unpack everything. Which means that XZ-Utils is a prequisite before this package is added.
  2. This version overwrites /usr/bin/man from the Man-DB package. To avoid having to recompile Man-DB, I'd excute mv -v /usr/bin/man{,.man-db} before installation, and rm /usr/bin/man && mv -v /usr/bin/man{.man-db,} after installation.
  3. If installing over teTex 3.0, when you try to run texi2dvi or texi2pdf, it uses the wrong version of etex and eventually fails. To avoid that problem, just run rm /usr/bin/{etex,pdfetex} before installing Texlive.
  4. It seems that texi2html is not included in Texlive unlike teTex, and needs to be built separately. Instructions are CMMI, and it can be gotten at Just thought I throw it out to you.
  5. The cm-super fonts are now included with the texlive-core package.
  6. And finally, this version is seperated into modules. This is the order that you should install everything in:
texlive-bin (this is two tarballs, the source and the texmf tarball. Use both, also use the attached fix-fontforge-encoding.patch that fixes an issue with luatex in UTF-8 locales).
texlive-core (This is an .zip file, so it requires unzip, it unzips into tons of *.tar.xz files. Use the Arch PKGBUILD for reference for how to install them (but replace bsdtar with just plain old tar with -vxf)), and also their texlive-install files.)
texlive-latexextra (Various addons for latex, again, use Arch's PKGBUILD and texlive-install file for reference.)
(The last packages can be installed in any order)
texlive-bibtexextra (Extra stuff for BibTeX, rember to use Arch's PKGBUILD and texlive-install for this)
texlive-fontsextra (Extra fonts, you should know what to do by now)
texlive-formatsextra (Extra formats, I think you should know what to do by now)
texlive-games (Apparently it's for typsetting games... I'm not sure what uses that...)
texlive-genericextra (This is basically extra generic macro packages and fonts.)
texlive-htmlxml (This allows TeX conversion to HTML/XML, and also to typeset XML/SGML into TeX. This package includes JadeTeX (which is used for SGML conversion to PDF/DVI/PS, so this means that this needs to be removed from the book and replaced with a pointer to Texlive), and PassiveTeX (which, if I'm correct, is used by libvorbis to build PDF documation, and should be replaced by a pointer to Texlive also.))
texlive-humanities (Arch says it's for humanities, but not sure what it's really useful for...)
texlive-lang* (There are 4 versions total, one of them is for CJK, another is for Cyrillic langugages,  another is for Greek, and the other is for extra pupources.)
texlive-latex3 (For LaTex3 support.)
texlive-music (For music purposes, but I'm not sure why I would need it...)
texlive-pictures (For creating images with TeX.)
texlive-plainextra (Extra stuff for plain old TeX.)
texlive-pstricks (Extra stuff for PSTricks.)
texlive-publishers (Extra stuff for specific publishers.)
texlive-science (Extra stuff for scientific puopuses.)

Well, that was rather wall-of-texty, but at least I have lots of info on this package...

comment:9 by Randy McMurchy, 13 years ago

In regards to the comments Ken made on BLFS-Dev, I will try to get a working installation of building Tex-Live into the book this week.

comment:10 by Randy McMurchy, 13 years ago

Milestone: future6.7

Updated milestone to 6.7

comment:11 by Randy McMurchy, 13 years ago

Hi all,

Happy New Years!

I have been working with TeXLive for some time now, and I think I have a build that is solid and functional. I will be adding a new page in the book for TeXLive after the new year. I also have two simple patches so that the TeTeX package can be installed (and functional) for current LFS SVN. There is a huge amount of disk space used between the two packages. TeXLive will need a huge amount of disk space to build and install (add 2.5gb if you use DESTDIR). It could total to 7gb. Ridiculous.

The JadeTeX package is not needed with the new 2010 version of LiveTeX as it is included in the main LiveTex installation. I will leave JadeTeX in the book until TeTeX is removed.

About the comment about a missing texi2html program, the TeXinfo package in LFS provides the required programs (makeinfo).

comment:12 by willimm, 13 years ago

Randy, before you add Texlive to the book, p l e a s e look at my above notes for Texlive 2009 and 2010 before you do the changes. I'd also look at Arch's PKGBUILDS for Texlive and it's various packages to give you some help on the way. And if this isn't clear enough, I'll make it clearer: XZ-Utils needs to be added before Texlive is added, as all of the tarballs for Texlive are in XZ format (because the package is so damn big even with the extra compression).

About texi2html, I have some questions about it: Can Texinfo now produce chunked HTML files, and if it can, is texi2html still needed for backwards compatibility with older packages?

Also, the macros for PassiveTeX are included with Texlive as well. Just letting you know because Libvorbis uses these macros for documentation.

comment:13 by Randy McMurchy, 13 years ago


You are like a tape recorder stuck repeating the same thing over and over and over. I appreciate your input with new items, but once is enough. You don't have to tell the community more than once about XZ utils. We all know. That package has been talked about going into LFS, so I've been waiting for that. Please, no more mention about XZ utils... ever.

As far as your most recent comments about the 2010 version, you and I have very different outlooks. I used the native tarballs from (didn't use the "extra", only the "source" and "texmf" tarballs). I don't see any conflict with man-db. In fact, of the 88,000+ files that are installed, only /usr/share/info/dir is overwritten. My home-brewed package-management system lets me know about any file that will be overwritten before the installation even begins.

I don't know about the PSUtils files noted above. I have not installed that package.

I don't know what you mean about the package "separated into modules". We don't need to discuss, as it is probably Arch's PKGBUILD system doing that.

I just unpacked the texmf tarball into my DESTDIR, created two temporary symlinks so that nothing is put in /usr/texmf or /usr/texmf-dist, ran a sed to fix some kpsewhich variables so that everything is in /usr/share/texmf and /usr/share/texmf-{config,var,dist,local}. Then CMMI.

After installation, create a font cache directory, a bit of cleanup by fixing broken symlinks to scripts and moving some man pages that are not properly installed, then configuration with texconfig-sys, fmutil-sys, updmap-sys, texlinks, and mktexlsr.

comment:14 by Randy McMurchy, 13 years ago

Resolution: fixed
Status: assignedclosed

I've added TeX Live to the book and have decided to keep teTeX in the book because it builds and works just fine and uses much, much less disk space.

comment:15 by bdubbs@…, 10 years ago

Milestone: 6.7

Milestone 6.7 deleted

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