** The Most Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) **
OS X TeX pdflatex fails.' Kpathsea: Running mktexfmt pdflatex.fmt' Bruno Voisin bvoisin at mac.com Wed Aug 16 05:32:21 EDT 2006. Previous message: OS X TeX pdflatex fails.' Kpathsea: Running mktexfmt pdflatex.fmt' Next message: OS X TeX pdflatex fails.' Kpathsea: Running mktexfmt pdflatex. An easy-to-install open source TeX distribution for MacOSX. It is essentially gwTeX plus XeTeX, with a simple GUI installer and a few extra applications. Information, download and project page.
[ click on the Q# to jump to the question & answer ]
MacTeX Q&A : getting or installing MacTeX
|QM.01:||Trouble completing the installation process.|
|QM.02:||No need to uninstall previous TeX distribution|
|QM.03:||When trying to typeset, my front end puts up a dialog claimingthat it cannot find tex (or pdfLaTeX, or XeTeX)|
|QM.04:||Fink and MacPort Questions|
|QM.05:||Where to put personal additions in the texmf tree|
|QM.06:||Why can't the latest MacTeX find my local BibTeX (.bst, .bib) files|
|QM.07:||Fonts in my TeX documents are wrong --- the Font Cache Bug.|
|QM.08:||Does MacTeX-2020 work on Mojave and Catalina?|
|QM.09:||Where can I obtain and download older versions of MacTeX?|
|QT.01:||Typesetting in TeXShop gives an error message related to (/usr/texbin)|
|QT.02:||TeXShop refuses to start, or behaves strangely|
|QT.03:||Damaged Macros Folder|
QM.01:I am having trouble completing the installation process. How can I get MacTeX installed?
One common problem is that users obtain a corrupted MacTeX.pkg after downloading the large file. There is an easy way tocheck that your download was successful. Run Apple's Terminal application in /Applications/Utilities. After the prompt, type the command
and a space, and then drag and drop the file MacTeX.pkg to theTerminal window to complete the command. Push Return.The Mac will compute an 'md5 checksum'. This sum should bethe sum shown at the top of the downloading page here.
Some users downloading with Google Chrome and possibly other browsersreport defective downloads. We recommend downloadingwith Safari. Users with problems also report success after downloading via the torrent network.
Defective downloads are essentially never due to a bad file on theserver because we test after uploading new versions. But users withdownload problems sometimes succeed after trying an alternateCTAN site. To do this, check on one of the links in the mirror page.
If you are at an institution with a large body of TeX users, a support person could put MacTeX-2020 on the DVD and loan you the DVD.
A final solution, if all else fails, is to go to http://www.tug.org/mactex/morepackages.htmland download BasicTeX; this distribution is quite complete and serviceable and the smaller download may cause fewer problems. You will also need a front end like TeXShop or those included in MacTeXtras.
QM.02:Do I need to uninstall my previous TeX distribution before installing MacTeX?
Install Pdflatex Mac
AM.02: No. The TeX Live in MacTeX installs in a new location, /usr/local/texlive/2020, and does not overwrite the old distribution. Consult the documentation for your older distribution to uninstall it, if you want to save space.
QM.03:When trying to typeset, my front end puts up a dialog claimingthat it cannot find tex (or pdfLaTeX, or XeTeX)
AM.03: Some users have installed software which incorrectly set thepermissions on /usr/local. To see if you have this problem, open Terminalin /Applications/Utilities. Type
ls -l /usr
and push RETURN (note that '-l' is a small el, not a number). Terminalwill print a list of folders. Look at the entry named 'local'. The permissionsat the start of this line should be
If instead they are 'drwx------' then carefully type the followingline in Terminal:
sudo chmod 755 /usr/local
You will be asked to supply your Login password.
QM.04: Fink (or MacPorts) is installed on my computer. After installing MacTeX,
(a) pdfTeX and TeX crash with error messages referring to broken libraries in /sw/...or/opt/...
(b) the versions of pdftex and tex in Fink or MacPorts run instead of the versions in TeX Live.
(c) pdftex runs erratically.
AM.04abc:MacTeX installs a symbolic link to the TeX Live binaries named /Library/TeX/texbin. Calling /Library/TeX/texbin/pdftex will reach the pdftex in TeX Live. Once this version runs, it will not be confused by the presence of Fink or MacPorts and will use the correct libraries, style files, fonts, and utilities in TeX Live.
The GUI programs shipped with MacTeX understand this symbolic link and automatically call /Library/TeX/texbin//pdftex. But if you call pdftex from the Terminal or another application, you may encounter the problem. The solution is simple. Find your shell startup script. That script should contain a command modifying PATH so /sw (or /opt) comes first. After this command, add a line to the script prepending /Library/TeX/texbin to the beginning of your PATH.
QM.05:Where do I put my personal additions to the texmf tree?
AM.05: They go in
and various subdirectories structured according to the standard TeX conventions. Here ~/Library is the Library folder in your home directory. You may have to create the texmf folder, and any subfolders of it mentioned below. For instance, TeX will find any file in
or a subfolder of this folder, and LaTeX will find any file in
or a subfolder of this folder. It is not necessary to run texhash when adding files to this local tree.
On Lion and above, the ~/Library folder is hidden. To open it, use the Finder's Go menu and hold down the Option key to revealan extra item in the menu.
QM.06:Why can't the latest MacTeX find my local BibTeX files? Earlier versions of MacTeX worked correctly.
AM.06: TeX Live is slightly pickier about placement of these files. '.bib' files go in
or subfolders of this directory, and '.bst' files go in
or subfolders of this directory.
QM.07:I installed MacTeX and now all of the fonts in my TeX documents are wrong. I checked this in Preview, TeXShop, LaTeXiT, TeXniscope, and other programs. They all display bad fonts, so I must have messed up the installation. Maybe it is because I used custom install and installed the Latin Modern and TeX Gyre fonts.
AM.07: The problem (known as the 'font cache bug' in Mac OS X) was fixed in MacTeX-2009 and all later distributions are fine.
QM.08:Does MacTeX-2020work on Mojave and Catalina?
Yes, it has been extensively tested and used on both systems. This question will come up again when Apple releases their next version ofmacOS, probably in fall of 2020. But the developers of MacTeX-2020 will have downloaded the beta of that system on the first day of WWDC,the developer conference, and worked on it extensively during the summer. If problems exist after the system release, they will be prominently mentioned on theseweb pages.
QM.09:Where can I obtain and download older versions of MacTeX?
To Obtain Older Versions of MacTeX If You Are Running Mac OS 10.3 through 10.11, click here
QT.01:Typesetting in TeXShop gives an error message:
'Can't find required tool. /usr/local/texlive/bin/x86_64-darwin does not exist. Perhaps TeX Live was not installed or was removed ...'
AT.01: This error means that TeXShop could not find a TeX distribution. Usually users who see it downloaded TeXShop, but forgot to download TeX itself. The solution is to install TeXLive-2020. If you installed with MacTeX, you will not see this error.
QT.02:TeXShop refuses to start, or behaves strangely.Or, for example, you get the message:
AT.02: There may be a damaged TeXShop preferences file. Quit TeXShop, and reboot your machine. Then before starting TeXShop again, move the file
Texlive Mac Os~/Library/Preferences/TeXShop.plist
to your desktop. Then start TeXShop. If this fixes the problem, reset your preferences as desired. If not, put the old plist file back to restore your old preferences.
Make sure you are using the latest version of TeXShop
QT.03:TeXShop complains of a damaged Macros file when it starts.
AT.03: There may be a damaged Macros folder in TeXShop's configuration files. Quit TeXShop, move the Macros folder
to the desktop, and restart TeXShop. It will create a new Macros folder with a working Macros file.
For more information about other frequently asked questions please
- search the Archives of the Mac OS X TeX mailing list
If you still have problems with the MacTeX Installer, you may contact us via themactex-support webpage.
MiKTeX for Mac is distributed as a disk image (
.dmg) file. If you double click the disk image file, you will see a Finder window:
To install MiKTeX, simply drag the MiKTeX icon onto the
Applications shortcut icon. This will install the
MiKTeX Console application and essential support files (executables, frameworks, configuration files).
Finishing the setup
Before you can use MiKTeX, you have to finish the setup. Click the
MiKTeX Console icon in Launchpad to start MiKTeX Console:
Now is the time to make a decision:
Do you want to set up a private (for you only) TeX installation, or do you want to set up a shared (system-wide) TeX installation?
You probably want to choose the first option.
The second option makes sense if you are the administrator of a multi-user system. If this is the case and if you expect that some of your users would like to work with MiKTeX, then you should install MiKTeX system-wide.
Click one of the two buttons if you have made your decision.
If you have just installed MiKTeX, then you have the option to upgrade your installation to a standard TeX system. Just click the
Upgrade button. Please be aware that this starts a ~200MB download.
Alternatively, you can turn on the auto-install feature and let MiKTeX install missing packages on-the-fly. This will help you to keep your TeX installation as minimal as possible (“Just enough TeX”).
luatex have been installed in
~/bin. This folder is usually not in the search path for executables, i.e., two additional steps might be necessary:
- Add the
~/bindirectory to the environment variable
PATH(see here, for details).
- If you use TeXshop, you have to set some preferences (see here, for details).
You can remove MiKTeX completely from your system. To do so, open a Terminal window and run these commands:
miktexsetup cleanupto remove MiKTeX files which have been created in your home directory
- if MiKTeX has been installed system-wide, run
sudo miktexsetup --shared=yes cleanupto remove MiKTeX files which have been created outside your home directory
sudo rm -fr /Applications/MiKTeX Console.appto remove the application files