additional texmf tree for all users (was Re: [OS X TeX] Beginner help with TeXshop/MacTex needed)

Rowland McDonnell rjmm-lists1 at
Sun Aug 27 06:02:09 EDT 2006

[snip huge amount of quoted text that's completely redundant and should
not have been re-sent to the mailing list]

> after reading all your concerns about iI I can´t help but wonder why  
> you  would want to start using it once more? 

Umm.  Using what, exactly?  And why the hell should it matter to you?
This is a technical mailing list, but you lot seem to have spent more
time trying to bully me into compliance with what you consider to be the
correct (i.e., what Gerben Wierda set up) method of working than giving
me the technical help I've requested to do what I want - which happens
not to be the same as what Gerben Wierda wants - why not?  If
i-installer had decent documentation, maybe I'd be able to learn to
trust it.  Since it doesn't, and since I have a large accretion of TeX
additions in a single directory tree - well, I've posed my technical
questions to help me deal with these issues in my migration from
CMacTeX/OzTeX to teTeX.

But you, for example, have done nothing to provide technical assistance.
What was the point in you sending your frankly rather unpleasant and
personally insulting message to the mailing list?  It's really rather
unhelpful if you ask me and, to my mind, very much off topic.

>If  you don´t trust it,  
> why not just leave it?

Well, if you'd been paying attention, you'll have noted that I've not
attempted to use i-installer this time around, and also that I have only
mentioned it (to speak of) in response to weird people demanding that I
justify my reasons for wishing to do things the non-standard way before
they'll give me the simple technical information I'm requesting.  I find
this behaviour bizarre to say the least.

>The whole discussion seems a little weird,  
> given the fact that you can´t quite remember what exactly happened  
> that day when you lost your files 

<sigh>  Of course I can't.  It was about a year (or more?) ago.  Who
bothers to keep track of things like that?

I don't want to discuss the data loss caused by i-installer - I view
what happened as a minor inconvenience that happened a long time ago,
and I intend to avoid it happening in the future and by doing backups, I
shall ensure that (actually, I started doing the backups back then -
after the first data loss.  I didn't get a repeat, but I never did get
i-installer to do anything that gave me a working TeX installation, so I
gave up on it in disgust.  But that is *NOT* what I'm here to talk about
- the fact that I personally have a great dislike for a bit of software
*DOESN'T BLOODY WELL MATTER*!  I just want particular technical
information and I do not want to talk about i-installer *AT ALL*.  Got

For some reason, many people on this mailing list have asked me about
this minor problem I suffered (and then put out of my mind and got on
with something else) in the dim and distant past.

All I've asked for myself is technical information to enable me to do
certain jobs in setting up my new TeX installation.  You lot seem to
want me to justify and explain absolutely everything before you're
willing to offer basic technical assistance.  This, I do not understand.

>(I would expect the same level of  
> clarity here that you are asking for regarding the details of the  
> texmf-issue) 

What?  Is this some kind of personal criticism of me, or what?

Why not stop with the hassling and start with the useful technical
input, eh?  This is after all supposed to be a technical mailing list,
is it not?

I'm getting pretty fed up with a lot of the responses I'm getting.  Drop
the personal shit directed against me, eh?  I just want technical
information.  Never you mind what I want to do with it: that's *MY*
damned business, not yours.  My reasons are very straightforward, very
clear, and I'm amazed that so many people have such difficulty
understanding that it's much easier to manage your own additions when
they're in a single, segregated directory tree.

It is to my mind the obviously best way to do things and I'm astonished
that it's not how MacTeX is set up as standard - it's the way that OzTeX
4 (amongst other versions) expected you to work, and it's the best way
of doing it that I know of.

So anyway, since MacTeX has what is to my mind this mis-feature of
requiring local additions to be mixed up with all sorts of other stuff
that might be deleted by i-installer or I don't know what else, it
becomes not just a matter of convenience but critical importance that I
protect my additions by segregating them - and that is what I shall do.

>and nobody else seems to have witnessed similar  
> problems. 

That's no-one else that you've heard of - but so what?  I really do not
get your point.  You don't know of any problems, therefore no problems
exist?  Nah: that's insanity.  i-installer has big problems, and I
really do not like it.

> In case you decide to give it another try: good luck - and  
> maybe you will be surprised to find yourself among all those who do  
> not have any issues with iI at all (would be glad see that happen).


The big problem is that the i-installer documentation does not explain
what it does, exactly.  So I really cannot trust it because I do not
know what it's going to do next due to inadequate documentation.  I will
have to use i-installer as far as I can tell because it seems to be
about the only way of updating a MacTeX installation.  But the way I'll
use it is to make a full backup of my TeX installation *and* any data
that i-installer has previously fetched before I use i-installer, every
time I do so.

<shrug>  What else?  Any other way of doing it is just plain stupid if
you ask me, and I've got plenty of disc space now to make such a job
very quick and easy (the Mac I'm using at the moment has three HDDs; the
new one only has two, but they're bigger, and we'll be getting an
external HDD in the next week or two - if I can find a suitable FW800
enclosure.    I'd rather not wait for my computer, y'see.  Oh yeah, and
there's the two internal DVD burners.).

Why don't you try to give a rational explanation of why I shouldn't do
it my way - so far, it's been `Well, this is standard and I don't know
of any problems with it, so you should do it the same way as everyone
else because copying everyone else is best'.  No it bloody well isn't! -
it's why we're all using TeX on Macs, rather than MS Word under MS
Windoze, innit?

Or, better still, why not drop all this shit and just stick to the
technical stuff?

(amazed at the personal comments and attacks he's been subjected to)
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