[OS X TeX] Leopard MacTeX PATH problems, still

Alan Litchfield alan at alphabyte.co.nz
Sat Mar 22 19:58:58 EDT 2008


Herb makes a useful point here (as usual :). There is more than one possible
shell that can be used in any given Unix environment, and on the same machine
it is possible to have more than one shell running concurrently. So it is not
feasible to script path changes as one might in, say, DOS. Added to that, one
may not want to install into the default directory and a script is not likely
to be smart enough to know the difference.

By the way, I was not aware that the MacTeX installation script made changes
to paths. Is this the case with TeXLive? I for one would rather they did not
since any script cannot know what else I have put in there. It would be a big
pain for ad hoc changes made by someone I don't know to affect intentional
additions I have made.

Typically, it is up to the user to make the necessary changes to their
environment so that it operates in the manner they expect, unless of course
they are in a work group that is administered for them, in which case their
path may have been inherited.

Editing the path is relatively straightforward but one does need to know what
shell they are using and what file they intend to store their parameters in,
such as those Herb mentioned.


Herbert Schulz wrote:
> On Mar 22, 2008, at 5:48 PM, David Airey wrote:
>> I posted in January about my PATH variable not being set correctly
>> on my Leopard OS X system, following MacTeX installation. The
>> symptoms are programs and scripts other than TeXShop not being able
>> to latex files (like TextMate, which I wanted to try). Currently the
>> PATH variable is:
>> Last login: Sat Mar 22 15:51:44 on ttys000
>> [AireyDC:~] dairey% echo $PATH
>> /bin:/sbin:/usr/bin:/usr/sbin
>> [AireyDC:~] dairey%
>> I was under the impression that after running the leopard fixes from
>> Dick Koch, tex should be in there somewhere. But they are not. The
>> appropriate files are in etc/paths.d with the same permission
>> settings as the help file for the leopard fix package describes, but
>> I don't think everything is as it should be.
>> I also tried installation of Basic TeX, but that did not correct the
>> path either.
>> How do I manually set my PATH variable?
>> Thank you.
>> -Dave
> Howdy,
> Do you have a PATH set in a ~/.profile, ~/.bash_profile or ~/.bashrc
> (I'm assuming you're using bash as your shell in Terminal)? How about
> a ~/.MacOSX/environment.plist file that sets the PATH? I'm just
> wondering if you've got something that is overriding the one set by /
> etc/paths+/etc/paths.d/*. By the way do you have a file /etc/paths.d/
> TeX?
> Good Luck,
> Herb Schulz
> (herbs at wideopenwest.com)
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Alan Litchfield MBus (Hons), MNZCS
PO Box 1941, Auckland

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