[tex-live] Windows 7 still fails

Benedict Holland benedict.m.holland at gmail.com
Wed Sep 26 00:04:31 CEST 2018

Hi all,

Yes. I am well aware that my problems are not everyone's. That said,
searching for Perl.exe throwing an error on a texlive install under windows 7
results in a lot of hits so apparently it isn't just me.

I know of no applications that install any software on root in windows or
Linux by default. I have used both extensively for more than 15 years. I
mention setting paths precisely because it is a port. The defaults since
Vista was to install user applications in their AppData directory. Python
does this. Python 2.7 used to install under root this but they stopped and
now follow the common paths. The default location since XP was to install
32-bit applications in C:\Program Files (x86)\ and 64-bit applications in
C:\Program Files\. Both require admin rights. Since you know if they are
running the install as admin and you know that it is windows, it shouldn't
be too difficult to set a default path better than root.

Regarding Philip's response, that is true and texlive already seems to
partition the executables well in a normal user install. I can't think of a
better place for computer-wide data. I have seen way worse than to place
computer wide and accessible files and folders within Program Files. At the
very least, the default single user should probably be in AppData.

Installing directly under C:\ requires admin rights and is typically
frowned upon. Telling users to disable security features is quite bad. This
isn't an opinion. If someone handed code to you and told you to run it as
root but make sure to disable your firewalls and anti-virus software, you
shouldn't install it. We are well past the era where we just get to
magically trust code. Also, unfortunately, users might not know how to
disable a firewall or even have rights to do so. I don't know what Perl is
doing to need ports open but given that it seems to be a persistent problem
and has been for at least 4 years, I wish to bring it to your attention. I
don't know how difficult that would be to fix and I don't know what the
error is.

Basically, I tried installing it, the install still gives errors, I don't
know why, the error messages are less than helpful, it seemed to require a
full perl install, and the -v gui text seemed to work but again, I don't
know why.

Oh. Another note about the installer. If perl.exe does crash, the install
looks like it completes. It would be nice to give an error message saying
that the install did not complete successfully.

Believe it or not, I don't want to sound mean. This product is awesome. It
is just too complex to give to someone who isn't a developer and tell them
to install it and following your advice opens their computer up to
vulnerabilities. Since Lyx is actually that simple and Lyx demands a
TexLive install, I would love to see it get to a point where a normal user
can simply install it or report useful errors. Way easier said than done I
am sure.


On Tue, Sep 25, 2018 at 5:52 PM Philip Taylor <P.Taylor at rhul.ac.uk> wrote:

> Benedict Holland wrote:
> Also, make the default install location C:\Users\<local user> if they are
> not running it as admin and C:\Program Files (x86)\ if they are. It's the
> little things like that which will solve a host of problems. If I tried to
> install something as a user on C:\ it would just fail.
> Please do *not* make the default install location C:\Program Files
> (x86)\; the vast majority of TeX Live is data, not program.  Microsoft
> recognise that C:\Program Files & C:\Program Files (x86) should contain
> executables, not data, and provide various alternative locations where such
> executables may store their data; in TeX Live, programs and data are
> inextricably bound together, and thus such separation is not possible —
> therefore, C:\Program Files (x86) is a very poor and inappropriate location
> in which to install such a mixed bundle.
> --
> <Signature>
> Philip Taylor
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <https://tug.org/pipermail/tex-live/attachments/20180925/f617947c/attachment-0001.html>

More information about the tex-live mailing list