#176 setup: minimal MiKTeX [2.5]


The small MiKTeX is already small, but I think we also should distrubute a minimal MiKTeX including just base LaTeX and standard packages. Then the auto-installer should install everything else. Excluding source files as well of course. Maybe 5MB is reachable? This would a great improvement for modem users.


PS! (How minimal we can discuss.) Let me know if you want me to test how minimal we can make it, but please inform me which cab-files are absolutely needed to make MiKTeX itself run.


  • Christian Schenk

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    Thanks for the suggestion. I think it is a good idea.

    There are some packages that I consider "essential"
    (see attachment)

    The LPPL prohibits source-less distribution, i.e., the
    minimal installer must include the LaTeX source files

    What do you think must be included in the minimal
    installer? Should this be discussed in the MiKTeX ml?

  • Hans Fr. Nordhaug

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    Thx for the fast reply. The size of your essantial files are
    currently 6186 kb. That is a number I really can like.

    If I follow your thinking, the base for each of these bins
    will be installed by the auto-installer the first time the
    bin is run. Sounds great to me. If the auto-installer really
    can handle this we are really close to having a minimal
    MiKTeX already. (Can the auto-installer install the
    ghostscript packages if a user tries to view a dvi-file with
    PS-file included? If so, I have no additions to your list.)
    Another issue is fonts - should the Bluesky CM type1 fonts
    be downloaded as soon as dvips/pdftex is run or should we
    let the user select between pk and type1. (I would say -
    force type1 download when needed.)

    We could of course discuss this on the mailing list -
    probably there are some on the list who have an opinion.
    I'll make a post today and then come back here with a
    summary when/if I get some feedback.


  • Luis

    Luis - 2005-03-16

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    I have a comment on this: recently we got some discussion
    in comp.text.tex about a "lightweight" TeX installation:
    something fitting easily in a 64Mb flash drive, and able to run
    on its own (no registry entries, for instance) in any Windows
    system. In my view, the absolutely minimal TeX distribution
    MUST include

    plain TeX and binary,
    plain Metafont and binary,
    Computer Modern family,
    a DVI driver (perhaps YAP),
    minimal support programs (Knuth's macros, texware, mfware,
    and web).

    These programs are able to pass Knuth's trip and trap tests,
    and therefore count as true "TeX".

    These programs make an absolutely minimal installation. Add
    the installer, and you might expand your installation as much
    as you like.

    All together might fit it in about 3Mb, I think.

  • Luis

    Luis - 2005-11-28

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    I don't know if I want dvipdfm by default... I mean, it may
    require Type-1 fonts, making the distribution much bigger,
    and AFAIK, Yap could do the job with pk fonts. A good
    substitute may be dvips, which can handle pk fonts as well...

  • Christian Schenk

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    Status update:

    I am planning to release a "minimal" MiKTeX installer
    in the near future. It will contain the MiKTeX executables
    (i.e., all miktex-*-bin packages). No macros, no fonts,
    just the executables.


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