The Arm Linux binaries are incompatible with older systems

Karl Berry karl at
Sat Sep 25 00:51:37 CEST 2021

1. GNU manuals should not (and usually do not) even require the latest
version of Texinfo, let alone the latest version of TeX.

2. In practice, Texinfo does not need (or make use of) any new version
of TeX. I believe any version of TeX going back, oh, a decade or two
would suffice for most Texinfo manuals.

3. Nelson Beebe provides binaries for a great many platforms, including
arm.  I don't know the version. See
the binaries are at

4. I use CentOS 7 myself. I built the distributed x86-linux binaries
there for many years. Then ICU, in its wisdom, started requiring new
"features" of C++ than were supported. I did not want to distribute
binaries built with my own gcc (I've done it in the past), so had to
give up. 

5. In principle, we want to distribute binaries built on the oldest
"feasible" system, whatever that might mean in a given case. It comes
down to what systems are available to the volunteers who provide the
binaries, and how much time they have to finagle all the necessary

6. Building a cut-down set of binaries yourself seems like the best
approach. I suppose you want to provide pdfs. In which case all you need
is pdftex and the (relatively tiny) support files to build the plain

Happy TeXing,

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