TeX Live

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According to Wikipedia:

TeX Live is a free software distribution for the TeX typesetting system that includes major TeX-related programs, macro packages, and fonts.

TeX Live includes the tex(1) and pdftex(1) programs, the LaTeX and ConTeXt TeX macro packages and the XeTeX and LuaTeX TeX engines.

Installation

  • The texlive-most group contains most TeX Live packages.
    • texlive-core, the essential package, based on the medium upstream install scheme (all other packages are based on the upstream collections). The package includes pacman hooks to automate mktexlsr, fmtutil and updmap.[1]
    • texlive-bin contains the binaries and libraries (it is a dependency of texlive-core).
  • The texlive-lang group contains packages providing character sets and features for non-English languages.
    • texlive-langextra provides language support for African, Arabic, Armenian, Croatian, Hebrew, Indic, Mongolian, Tibetan and Vietnamese.
  • The biber utility used to handle biblatex bibliography is provided as a separate package.

To determine which CTAN packages are included in each texlive- package, look up the files /var/lib/texmf/arch/installedpkgs/<package>_<revnr>.pkgs.

Note: Some tools and utilities included in TeX Live rely on ghostscript, perl, python2, or ruby.
Tip: You may want to install a TeX editor.

tllocalmgr

The tllocalmgr utility, provided by texlive-localmanager-gitAUR, lets you install (and update) packages from CTAN as pacman packages, see its usage (-h) for details.

Package documentation

The packages in the official repositories do not contain the documentation or source files of font/macro packages.

For offline access with texdoc you can either install the whole TeX Live documentation and source files with texlive-most-docAUR or install documentation of specific packages with tllocalmgr.

You can also access the documentation online at:

Manual installation

Alternatively you can install TeX Live with the upstream installer, which is packaged as texlive-installerAUR. For more information, see the LaTeX Wikibook and the TeX Live Guide.

Usage

Note:
  • While texlive-core provides the tlmgr script in TEXMFDIST, it is broken. For package installations you can use tllocalmgr instead.
  • The texconfig(1) command is mostly broken because it partially depends on tlmgr (FS#59094). The interactive mode of texconfig requires dialog.

See the following resources:

texmf trees and Kpathsea

texmf trees (texmf stands for TeX and Metafont) should follow the TeX Directory Structure, or files may not be found.[2]

TeX Live uses the Kpathsea library to lookup paths by filename across multiple texmf trees and the current working directory.

Kpathsea searches the following variables in the reverse order (later trees override earlier ones).

Variables Arch default 1) Used by [3]
TEXMFDIST /usr/share/texmf-dist files of the original distribution
TEXMFLOCAL /usr/local/share/texmf:/usr/share/texmf administrators for system-wide installation of additional or updated macros, fonts, etc.
TEXMFSYSVAR /var/lib/texmf updmap and fmtutil (user mode) to store (cached) runtime data
TEXMFSYSCONFIG /etc/texmf updmap and fmtutil (user mode) to store modified configuration data
TEXMFHOME ~/texmf users for their own individual installations of additional or updated macros, fonts, etc.
TEXMFVAR ~/.texlive/texmf-var updmap and fmtutil (sys mode) to store (cached) runtime data
TEXMFCONFIG ~/.texlive/texmf-config updmap and fmtutil (sys mode) to store modified configuration data
TEXMFCACHE $TEXMFSYSVAR;$TEXMFVAR ConTeXt MkIV and LuaLaTeX to store (cached) runtime data
  1. The default values are defined in /etc/texmf/web2c/texmf.cnf[4], they can be overridden with environment variables.

Kpathsea provides the kpsewhich(1) command to lookup paths. When run with the -var argument it can also print the values of variables.

Kpathsea uses filename databases (ls-R) to speed up searches in system-wide texmf trees (configured with the TEXMFDBS variable). This means that when system-wide file trees are changed, mktexlsr(1) or texhash (a symlink) need to be run as root. Fortunately the texlive-core automates this with a pacman hook targeting all default system-wide texmf trees but /usr/local/share/texmf.[5] So as long as you install system-wide packages via pacman you should not need to run mktexlsr or texhash at all.

Important information

Tango-view-refresh-red.pngThis article or section is out of date.Tango-view-refresh-red.png

Reason: ConTeXt nowadays works out of the box. You just sometimes need to run mtxrun --generate.[6] (Discuss in Talk:TeX Live#)
  • The ConTeXt formats (for Mark II and IV) are not automatically generated upon installation. See the ConTeXT wiki for instructions on how to do this.
  • TeX Live (upstream) now provides a tool for incremental updates of CTAN packages. On that basis, we also plan to update our packages on a regular basis (we have written tools that almost automate that task).
  • The way to handle font mappings for updmap(1) was improved in September 2009, and installation should now be much more reliable than in the past. In the meantime, if you encounter error messages about unavailable map files, simply remove them by hand from the updmap.cfg file (ideally using updmap-sys --edit). You can also run updmap-sys --syncwithtrees to automatically comment out outdated map lines from the config file.

Tips and tricks

Changing default paper size

Tango-inaccurate.pngThe factual accuracy of this article or section is disputed.Tango-inaccurate.png

Reason: It's possible by directly editing the config files.[7] (Discuss in Talk:TeX Live#)

It is currently impossible to set the default page size, because the Arch package removes the tool necessary for this, see FS#59094.

Usually, you would run the texconfig command, which is also capable of changing other useful settings.

Making fonts available to Fontconfig

By default, the fonts that come with the various TeX Live packages are not automatically available to Fontconfig. If you want to use them with, say XeTeX or LibreOffice, the easiest approach is to make symlinks as follows:

 ln -s /usr/share/texmf-dist/fonts/opentype/public/<some_fonts_you_want> ~/.fonts/OTF/ (or TTF or Type1) 

To make them available to fontconfig, run:

 fc-cache ~/.fonts
 mkfontscale ~/.fonts/OTF (or TTF or Type1) 
 mkfontdir ~/.fonts/OTF (or TTF or Type1)

Alternatively, texlive-core contains the file /etc/fonts/conf.avail/09-texlive-fonts.conf that contains a list of the font directories used by TeX Live. You can use this file with:

# ln -s /etc/fonts/conf.avail/09-texlive-fonts.conf /etc/fonts/conf.d/09-texlive-fonts.conf

And then update fontconfig:

# fc-cache && mkfontscale && mkfontdir
Note: This may cause conflicts with XeTeX/XeLaTeX if the same fonts are (separately) available to both TeX and Fontconfig, i.e. if multiple copies of the same font are available on the search path.

Updating babelbib language definitions

Tango-edit-clear.pngThis article or section needs language, wiki syntax or style improvements. See Help:Style for reference.Tango-edit-clear.png

Reason: You should not change /usr/share/texmf-dist/. (Discuss in Talk:TeX Live#)

If you have the very specific problem of babelbib not having the latest language definitions that you need, and you do not want to recompile everything, you can get them manually from https://www.tug.org/texlive/devsrc/Master/texmf-dist/tex/latex/babelbib/ and put them in /usr/share/texmf-dist/tex/latex/babelbib/. For example:

# cd /usr/share/texmf-dist/tex/latex/babelbib/ 
# wget https://www.tug.org/texlive/devsrc/Master/texmf-dist/tex/latex/babelbib/romanian.bdf
# wget [...all-other-language-files...]
# wget https://www.tug.org/texlive/devsrc/Master/texmf-dist/tex/latex/babelbib/babelbib.sty

Afterwards, you need to run texhash to update the TeX database:

# texhash

Troubleshooting

Error with "formats not generated" upon update

See FS#16467. (Note that if you do not use the experimental engine LuaTeX, you can ignore this.) This situation typically occurs when the configuration files language.def and/or language.dat for hyphenation patterns contain references to files from earlier releases of texlive-core, in particular to the latest experimental hyphenation patterns for German, whose file name changes frequently. Currently they should point to dehyph{n,t}-x-2009-06-19.tex.

To solve this, you need to either remove these files: /etc/texmf/tex/generic/config/language.{def,dat} or update them using the newest version under: /usr/share/texmf/tex/generic/config/language.{def,dat} and then run

# fmtutil-sys --missing

See also