Scientific Typesetting

Chapter 7: Scientific Typesetting

Different flavors of LaTeX are available. One of the most popular is called TexLive. To install in Linux Ubuntu, open a terminal and run:

sudo apt-get install texlive

This command creates a very minimal installation of LaTeX. There are many optional packages available. To install them all, use:

sudo apt-get install texlive-full

To install just a few, read the documentation here, choose the packages you want to install, and run commands like:

sudo apt-get install gedit-latex-plugin texlive-fonts-recommended latex-beamer texlive-pictures texlive-latex-extra texpower-examples imagemagick

For different Linux distributions, read here.

By far the best option is to install MacTeX. There are two main options: a basic installation, and a full installation.

The installation is detailed here.

proTeXt provides a simple installation for Windows users. Please follow the instructions here.

I cannot run pdflatex from the terminal

Depending on how you installed the software, you might not be able to call pdflatexbibtex, etc. from your command line. This is because the terminal doesn't know where the software is located.

To make the terminal aware of the program, you need to edit the file .bash_profile that is located in your home directory (if the file doesn't exist already, you can create it).

For example, in OS X you might have installed LaTeX in the directory /usr/texbin. You want to add this directory to the list of directories that are automatically searched when you type a command in the terminal. To do so, open your .bash_profile in a text editor, and add the following line to the file:

export PATH=$PATH:/usr/texbin

Save the file, and restart the terminal. Now you should be able to invoke the commands.

To list all the directories that are searched when looking for programs, type:

echo $PATH

in your terminal.

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