[metafont] Re: [metapost] TeX and MF: Fast-loading of core image

Robin Fairbairns Robin.Fairbairns at cl.cam.ac.uk
Wed Jan 5 18:09:57 CET 2005

> Hi Taco,
> On Wed, 5 Jan 2005, Taco Hoekwater wrote:
> >
> > Nowadays, people do not worry that much about cpu cycles burned
> > during initialization, because actually loading extra junk from
> > the harddisk is often slower that alloc()-ing.
> What about TeX and MF?  Do you (or does anybody) happen to know what
> current distributions do?

the \dump command writes a tex format; dump writes an mf format.

that's all that current distributions do.  the "dump core and reload
it" scheme, where an entire application and its bss and all were
written to disc, went out before i started using tex on un*x in 1992.
afaik, it never happened under vms, which was what i was using before

> Thanks for your reply and the link.  I do still want to learn how to do
> it, even if it's not strictly speaking necessary on modern systems.

just to provoke you, i'll point out that there are latex macros
designed for dumping formats which include the entire headers of

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