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<title>Yosemite - MacTeX - TeX Users Group</title>
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<h2 align="center">** TeX on Yosemite **</h2>
This is a summary of reports about TeX on Yosemite. The summary will be
maintained over the next month by Herbert Schulz and Richard Koch. TeX basically works, but there are minor problems with some programs.
The MacTeX and BasicTeX install packages work fine on Yosemite, and standard
command line programs in TeX Live work correctly. Front ends like TeXShop, TeXWorks, and others work fine.
We have two reports from users who updated from Mavericks to Yosemite rather than installing Yosemite on a fresh disk partition. Both users report that when the installation was almost complete, there was a long delay with no feedback: one hour in one case and twelve hours in another. During this delay, the installer's log file reported that it was copying TeX Live files one by one from "/Volumes/Hard Disk/Recovered Items/usr/local/texlive" to "/Volumes/Hard Disk/usr/local/texlive".
<p> (Report by Koch) I did not run into this problem with the developer version of Yosemite, but I installed on a fresh partition and then used MacTeX to install TeX. When Yosemite was released on October 16, I installed again on Apple's 2012 Macbook Pro with Retina Display, this
time updating a copy of Mountain Lion to Yosemite. This portable has a solid state drive.
Sure enough, there was a long delay when the installer stated "About 2 minutes remaining," with the predicted messages in the log file. This machine had TeX Live 2013, TeX Live 2014, and Basic TeX 2014 installed.
<p>In my case, the full installation of Yosemite took one hour and 56 minutes. Initially the
installer reported that installation would require 18 minutes. It later updated this to 55 minutes, but by the 18 minute mark it was predicting completion in another 2 minutes. At that
point there was a long delay, and the predicted 18 minute install took 1 hour and 50 minutes.
After that the machine rebooted twice, and then a second installation began. The computer reported that this installation would take 7 additional minutes, but the final stage only took 6 minutes.
<p> The earlier user and I let the installation proceed to completion and ran into no problems. But canceling the installation could produce an unworkable TeX Live.
<p> The two users recommend that people upgrading from Mavericks to Yosemite first remove TeX Live from the disk. Use the Finder's ``Go'' menu to go to /usr/local/texlive. This folder will contain TeX distributions named by year: 2014, 2013, 2013basic, etc. It will also contain a folder named texmf-local. Leave texmf-local alone and drag the other folders to the trash. Then upgrade to Yosemite. At the end, reinstall TeX Live using
the MacTeX install package at http://tug.org/mactex. This install package
works fine on Yosemite.
<p>Or upgrade without removing TeX Live, but don't be alarmed by a long delay before the upgrade completes.
<h3>The TeX Dist Preference Pane</h3>
<p>MacTeX does not remove old distributions when installing a new version of TeX Live. Instead it installs a TeX Dist Preference Pane for Apple's System Preferences. This pane lists all TeX distributions and allows the user to activate one of them with a single click. This click automatically reconfigures all TeX GUI programs and also command line use of TeX by a shell. If a user runs into problems with a new distribution, they can easily retreat to the previous year's distribution.
<p>Currently the TeX Dist Pane does not work in Yosemite. The author has been notified and is working on a fix.
<p> If you don't use the Preference Pane, then this won't be a problem.
When a new distribution is installed, the install package automatically makes that distribution active. So if you install MacTeX from scratch, then the TeX Live portion of that package will be selected automatically.
<p>If you need to switch distributions, it is possible to do the job using the command line. The location /Library/TeX/Distributions contains
a hidden folder named .DefaultTeX and various visible folders with information on TeX Distributions: TeXLive-2014.texdist, TeXLive-2014-Basic.texdist, TeXLive-2013.texdist, etc.
The hidden folder and each texdist folder contains a folder named Contents;
these folders are actually all symbolic links.
To activate, say, TeXLive-2014, the Contents link in .DefaultTeX is set to
<dl> Contents --> ../TeXLive-2014.texdist/Contents
Changing this one link is the only thing necessary to activate a new
<p> For instance, the following commands in Terminal would activate TeXLive-2013:
<dl> cd /Library/TeX/Distributions/.DefaultTeX
<dl> sudo rm Contents
<dl> sudo ln -s ../TeXLive-2013.texdist/Contents Contents
<h3>An Alternate Preference Pane</h3>
An alternate Preference Pane which works on Yosemite is available from
This Preference Pane does not alter any data created by the original Pref Pane, and can be used along with it, or independently of it. The new
pane has certain advantages: it can switch to distributions on external disks or distributions installed in a user's home directory.
The disadvantage is that the link to active binaries is in
~/Library/TeX/LocalTeX/texbin rather than /usr/texbin, so applications must be reconfigured.
On the other hand, this location is safe from Apple interference, while
Apple sometimes removes /usr/texbin during upgrades.
<p> The zip file provides the new Pane, complete instructions about installation and use, and the complete source code. The new Pane only works on Mavericks, Yosemite,
<h3>TeX Live Utility</h3>
MacTeX installs TeX Live Utility in /Applications/TeX; it is an application by Adam Maxwell with an OS X interface to upgrade and customize TeX Live. This utility can update TeX Live in Yosemite,
but it runs into trouble when reconfiguring TeX using the script
updmap-sys. Adam Maxwell is well aware of this problem and has been
in correspondence with Apple about it.
The TeX Live Utility log file reports the bug as follows:
<dl> /usr/texbin/updmap-sys: line 30: exec: updmap: not found
It is possible to work around this problem by running the line in terminal as follows:
<dl> sudo /usr/texbin/updmap-sys
CocoAspell runs fine on Yosemite, but the installer runs into trouble
installing dictionaries on a fresh copy of Yosemite, and the Spelling
Pref Pane installed by CocoAspell does not initially run. The author has been notified of the trouble.
In the release version of Yosemite, it is possible to resurrect cocoAspell
as follows. From an installation of CocoAspell on Mavericks, go to
/usr/local/lib and find a folder named aspell-0.60 and several libraries whose names start with libaspell or libpsell. Copy this folder and these libraries to Yosemite, and move them into /usr/local/lib, creating this folder if necessary. Using sudo, change the owner of the files to root.
Again on Mavericks, go to "/Library/Application Support" and find the
folder named cocoAspell. Copy this folder to Yosemite and place it in "/Library/Application Support" there.
After these steps, the cocoAspell Preference Pane will run and the spell checker can be used as usual.