Installing LaTeX - what's the recommended way?

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vert
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Joined: 2017/01/13 07:57:13

Installing LaTeX - what's the recommended way?

Post by vert » 2020/02/12 08:43:56

Coming from fedora, I'm used to be able to pick various LaTeX Schemes and then have a quite large set of texlive packages to choose from via dnf, but on CentOS, there's not a lot of latex/texlive available via dnf.
So this is likely to cause some problems when working with other people who might be using packages I don't have available. There's already some journal templates I have used that demand stuff that's not supported.
So how do I get full LaTeX on CentOS?
Is this still the recommended way? I'm kinda hesitant to install stuff from outside of the package manager. But if I have to, it seems like flatpak would be the way to go, but besides being a bit cumbersome to set up, there's no latex on flathub. Or does the all-in-one nature of flatpaks mean that TeXstudio comes with latex? The flathub website unfortunately is way to modern and fancy to bother with such mundane details like download sizes or included packages, and I just don't wanna download it and then see what I actually got.

ps: Why does CentOS not ship full latex? I would expect since it is in fedora that it would just have been ported/reused for CentOS. Why not?

owl102
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Re: Installing LaTeX - what's the recommended way?

Post by owl102 » 2020/02/12 09:08:28

vert wrote:
2020/02/12 08:43:56
Is this still the recommended way?
At least I still thing so.

Usually I hesitate to install stuff from outside of the package manager, too, and usually I strongly recommend not to do so unless it is really necessary.

But this case is different: TeX has it's own eco system and TeXlive has its own package management system. Doing a snapshot of TeXlive, cripple it (by dropping the package manager and dropping some TeXlive packages as well), and put it into the own repository is really not a good idea (I reasoned it in the quoted link above), but this is what CentOS resp. Fedora does. This way one get a working TeX system easily, but you don't get bugfixes and updating or installing missing or updated packages manually could really be a pain in the a** and especially not be done easily by a LaTeX user (since the TeXlive package manager tlmgr is missing). And one get nearly null support (from tex.stackexchange.com or similar) if one LaTeX system is outdated.

So in the end I would still say: If TeXlive from CentOS repos is sufficient for you - That's fine, just use it. But if it is not it's IMHO a far better idea to install the "vanilla" TeXlive instead than trying to fiddle with current installation from the CentOS repos.
German speaking forum for Fedora and CentOS: https://www.fedoraforum.de/

vert
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Re: Installing LaTeX - what's the recommended way?

Post by vert » 2020/02/12 12:50:23

But this case is different: TeX has it's own eco system and TeXlive has its own package management system. Doing a snapshot of TeXlive, cripple it (by dropping the package manager and dropping some TeXlive packages as well), and put it into the own repository is really not a good idea
I understand that in theory, but in practice - at least it was the case for me on fedora - the benefits seem to outweigh it since latex is a pretty mature system and for most stuff I just need a relatively small subset of stuff, however:
So in the end I would still say: If TeXlive from CentOS repos is sufficient for you
the much smaller subset available on CentOS is not sufficient, so I guess I'll have to work the outside-of-package-manager route. Still would be interested in other opinions, though!
Also, I'm still interested in going the flatpak route, if this is possible at all.

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jlehtone
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Re: Installing LaTeX - what's the recommended way?

Post by jlehtone » 2020/02/12 13:50:36

Out of curiosity, how much texlive does Fedora have?

CentOS 7 has 550 texlive* packages, version 2:2012-43.20130427_r30134.el7
CentOS 8 has 315 texlive* packages, version 7:20180414-14.el8
Browser's find says "more than 1000" for Fedora 31.

There used to be a third-party yum repo with recent texlive (for el6 or el7).

How impossible would it be to take RPM sources from Fedora and rebuild?

sml
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Re: Installing LaTeX - what's the recommended way?

Post by sml » 2020/02/12 15:09:01

IIRC, the problem with rebuild is that it's just one big fat texlive.src.rpm (well, actually two of them: texlive and texlive-base) from which all the texlive-*.rpm binary packages get built.

E.g. I just ended up installing texlive-a4wide from Fedora 28 on CentOS 8, because rebuilding it was unfeasible for me:

Code: Select all

$ grep PRETTY_NAME /etc/os-release
PRETTY_NAME="CentOS Linux 8 (Core)"
$ rpm -qa texlive-a4wide*
texlive-a4wide-svn20943.0-52.fc28.2.noarch
texlive-a4wide-doc-svn20943.0-52.fc28.2.noarch

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