Installation tips for LyX with an alternative LaTeX distribution
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A text by Stephen Harris with the purpose of helping users of Microsoft Windows choosing to install LyX with an alternative LaTeX distribution, rather than the recommended MiKTeX, before the use of the LyX installer.
Installer Improvements have superceded some of this advice, Jan. 2006
This tip is for Windows users new to the LyX installation schemes, who have decided to get the LaTeX helper program needed by the LyX installation before they start the install with the LyX installer. The installer usually provides access to MiKTeX, the recommended Latex program, during the installation. This advice is useful for currently available installer versions: LyX1.3.6; LyX1.3.7_x
In order for LyX to work, it is necessary to install some helper programs prior to the LyX install itself. Obtaining these programs can be done before running the LyX installer. The default Latex program is called MiKTeX, and it is recommended. It is possible to install another Latex program called ProTeXt which is similar to MiKTeX. The TeX User Group (TUG) puts out a DVD which contains the Protext setup files. TUG named this DVD, which also has Linux install files, TeXLive2005. TUG also produces another release of TeXLive2005 on a CD, which is smaller and different from MiKTeX. It is for Win32 and based on another Latex distribution (Xemtex). Win32 and Protext are obtained separately and are not integrated or contained within the LyX installer which again, favors MiKTeX.
The point of this tip is to remind you to put the folder which contains "latex.exe" into the Windows Path before starting the LyX installation if you chose the last option above, Win32. Thus the entry needed for the Windows Path is
C:\TeXLive2005\bin\win32; (the folder containing the needed latex.exe)
This step, or the information it provides to you, may be helpful later during the LyX installation.
The TeXLive UG which is _now_ (Nov05) online is for 2004, so don't use it, as there is no Windows installer. The Texlive User Guide 2005 (=live.pdf) CD, gives an explanation of how to add directories to the Path in Chapter 7, section 7.11.5 I think it is easier to follow the Windows instructions which can be found by clicking on Start->Help and Support (Center)-> and typing "edit environment" in the Search window pane then <enter> Choose #5, "Add or change the values of environmental variables" click on it, and follow the instructions which then display on the right side of the window.
Part of your Windows Path will look like this after a successful install of this non-recommended choice (shows the other complementary programs too).
C:\Texlive2005\bin\win32;C:\Perl\bin;C:\LyX\bin;C:\Python24; C:\gs8.51\gs8.51\bin;C:\ImageMagick; C:\Program Files\Adobe\Acrobat7\Acrobat; C:\Program Files\Ghostgum\gsview;
Note that all of this is entered/written as a single line.
GSview is optional and you may have the free Acrobat Reader instead of Acrobat Writer which would be entered as below for example:
C:\reader7\Reader\; (the folder containing the needed AcroRd32.exe)
For a MiKTeX install (latex.exe) the Path is
C:\texmf\miktex\bin; (the folder containing the needed latex.exe)
One will see a similar path, perhaps not in the same order when LyX has finished installing after processing other apps, which shows under: LyX->Edit->Preferences->Paths->PATH prefix
It is good practice for LyX and its associated programs to be included in the Windows Path statement, whichever Latex distribution you are using. Choosing directories without spaces in them like
rather than the default,
is likely still the safer practice, unless the installer balks at changing the default and the install fails.