[OS X TeX] installing package exceltex on Mac OS X

Matthew Leingang leingang at math.harvard.edu
Wed May 7 16:17:17 EDT 2008

On May 7, 2008, at 3:43 PM, Gert van Oss wrote:

> Not being a regular reader of the list I tried to find something  
> about installing packages on Mac OS X (Leopard). Untill now didn't  
> feel confident with what I found. Maybe someone on this list can  
> help me in the right direction?
> I would like to install the package "exceltex" (http:// 
> www.physik.uni-freiburg.de/~doerr/exceltex/#probs) on my Mac. I've  
> leopard and a Latex installation straight from http://www.tug.org/ 
> mactex/](http://www.tug.org/mactex/ but I've no clue how exactly to  
> do the installation even after reading the little note that comes  
> with the package.
> ----
> For installation just copy the exceltex helper script somewhere in  
> your
> PATH for example $HOME/bin or /usr/local/bin, and make sure it is
> executable.
> The readimg.sty file should be copied somewhere LaTeX can find it,  
> usually
> $HOME/texmf/tex/latex/misc or /usr/local/lib/texmf/tex/latex/misc.  
> Dont
> forget to run 'texconfig rehash' afterwards.
> Thats it.
> -----
> I'm comfortable with Perl (SpreadSheet::ParseExcel) but just don't  
> know anything about installing Latex. Just to scared to ruin my  
> Latex. Any assistance that explains me what $HOME is or where I  
> should install these two files would be great.

Dear Gert,

$HOME is your home directory (directory:unix::folder:Mac).  When you  
installed the operating system or opened the mac  for the first  
time.  You created a user and gave the account a name.  Let's just  
say that the username is "gert."  Then every time you log in, the  
variable HOME gets set to /Users/gert.

With the usual TeX distributions the common place to look for user  
files is in
$HOME/Library/texmf (note the "Library" subfolder which is not in  
your documentation).  Within your user folder should be the Library  
folder; create recursively the subfolders "texmf", "tex", and  
"latex" (each containing the next).  Put the exceltex.sty (you didn't  
mention that one, but I believe there is) and readimg.sty files in  
that newly created subfolder.  Or, if you like, you can create a  
folder "exceltex" inside of the one you just created and put the  
exceltex stuff in there.

The two-tiered system- and user-level configuration method is there  
precisely to allow you to install (or uninstall) what you want  
without "ruining your LaTeX." :-)  You don't need to authenticate as  
administrator, you won't overwrrite existing files, and you won't  
need to run 'texconfig rehash' afterwards either.

The exceltex script is a program, so it needs to be made executable  
and placed someplace where the operating system knows to look for  
programs.  You said you have some perl experience; do you have a user- 
level folder for programs?  I suppose you could put them in $HOME/ 
Applications; I use $HOME/Library/Scripts/.  You would have to then  
edit the hidden file $HOME/.profile to include the line:

PATH=${PATH}:${HOME}/Library/Scripts; export PATH

(or whatever place you choose to put them).

It's hard to tell from your post what level of sophistication you  
have with unix, so if parts of this don't make sense, re-ask.


Matthew Leingang
Preceptor in Mathematics
Harvard University


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