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Formatting Information — An introduction to typesetting with LATEX

Appendix A: Installation

In this appendix…

  1. Size and space
  2. Installing the software
  3. Your Personal TEX Directory
  4. Installing new fonts
  5. Installation problems
  6. Configuring TEX search paths

TEX Live installs on all modern desktop, laptop, and server platforms. You can get a copy of the TUG DVD from your local TEX user group or another TUG member; or you can download the platform distribution you need from the TUG web site at; or you can download the ISO image at and burn your own DVD. All the individual platform distributions are available from CTAN in

This course is based on using one of the following distributions of TEX:

TEX Live

for all Unix & GNU/Linux systems including Apple Macintosh OS X, and for Microsoft Windows;

TEX Live is also available specially packaged for installation on Linux systems through the Linux repositories for each system.


for Microsoft Windows by Christian Schenk, which includes the TEXStudio editor, Ghostscript, and GSview;


for Apple Macs running OS X. MacTEX includes the TEXshop editor.

LATEX is included with all distributions of TEX.

The TEX Collection DVD is issued annually by TUG in conjunction with many of the local TEX user groups around the world (see for addresses), and edited by Karl Berry (TEX Live), Richard Koch (MacTEX), Manfred Lotz (CTAN), and Christian Schenk (MiKTEX). These people give an enormous amount of their personal time and energy to building and distributing these systems, and they deserve the thanks and support of the user community for all they do. A special debt is owed to the dedication of the late Sebastian Rahtz, one of the prime movers in TUG, the TEX Collection, and the support of TEX and LATEX for many decades.

There was also a selection of commercial distributions you could buy, as described in § 5 above, and while they are no longer available for sale, many are still in widespread use: they all process LATEX identically, but there are some differences in size, speed, packaging, installation, support, and extra software provided.

  1. On Unix & GNU/Linux systems, including Apple Macintosh OS X, the easiest way to do this is in a Terminal window, in your Personal TEX Directory, using the command mkdir -p fonts/source/public/whatever, as this creates any intervening subdirectories for you. Under Windows, you have to create each subsubdirectory individually.