[twg-tds] Extensions

Thomas Esser te at dbs.uni-hannover.de
Mon Aug 11 06:26:58 CEST 2003

> But it's not as simple as it seems.  Presently, we have 
> various "engines" (tex, pdfTeX, VTeX) and each one may 
> exist as traditional TeX or eTeX.  Now, do you want to 
> abolish the distinction between tex-pdftex-vtex, or the 
> distinction between TeX and eTeX?

Well, my suggestion was to abolish the distinction between
tex-pdftex-vtex-whatever-extension for files that are read along the
TEXINPUTS path. If some engine has some special thing, e.g. config files,
texmf/<engine> might still be the proper place. But then, the program
should have its own search path for such files and not abuse $TEXINPUTS
for it.

Would my suggestion be a problem for vtex? Could it somehow be solved
at TeX's macro level by adding wrappers which first detect for vtex and
then take care of the right action?

> >  Users want to be able to switch between engines. If one decides to
> >  use pdfetex and on other engine, lots of search paths have to be
> >  changed, because otherwise pdftex.cfg (which exists in texmf/pdftex)
> >  will not be found and things stop working.
> Where do you want the file pdftex.cfg to reside in the future?  

This depends on how the file is searched in the future. I could be
happy with texmf/pdftex, but then, pdftex should stop using $TEXINPUTS
for finding this file. Surely, I'll raise this issue on the pdftex
development list, but I'd first like to get a few more opinions about
"files read along $TEXINPUTS".


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