I installed the Tex Live 20130407 on my system. To save disk space, I did not install the documentation, because I thought that texdoc can download those files I ask it. However, issuing

texdoc caption

throws an error:

Sorry, no documentation found for caption. If you are unsure about the name, try searching CTAN's TeX catalogue at http://ctan.org/search.html#byDescription.

So, how can I:

  • either add the documentation to already existing TL install;
  • or make texdoc download the documentation when I ask for them?
  • 1
    TeX Live doesn't do "on demand download". – egreg Apr 25 '13 at 12:19
  • 2
    to add documentation to all already installed packages try issuing tlmgr option docfiles 1 and then tlmgr install --reinstall $(tlmgr list --only-installed | sed -e 's/^i //' -e 's/:.*$//') Only works for UNIX systems I think. – Nico Boni Apr 25 '13 at 12:47
  • @dcmst Since the install is fresh new, I've just re-installed everything and I'm quite happy. I therefore cannot test your idea :-/ – yo' Apr 25 '13 at 12:55
  • @tohecz the command i wrote is well known, don't worry, the important thing is that you solved your problem – Nico Boni Apr 25 '13 at 13:05
  • Then you ought to post it as an answer of course! :) – yo' Apr 25 '13 at 13:45

It is possible to add documentation files to already installed packages issuing the following commands in any terminal (both commands may need root privileges depending on how you installed Tex Live in the first place and the second is UNIX only):

tlmgr option docfiles 1

sets the docfiles option to 1, i.e. from now on tlmgr will download and install documentation files every time a new package is installed. If during the installation process of TeX Live the user chooses not to install docs, this option is automatically set to 0, so you need to manually change its value.

Then issue:

tlmgr install --reinstall $(tlmgr list --only-installed | sed -e 's/^i //' -e 's/:.*$//') 

the above command reinstalls all packages listed by tlmgr list --only-installed, i.e. all already installed packages. The sed part is used to remove everything except the package name from the list generated by tlmgr list --only-installed. As an example, before the sed part the first line of the list looks like:

i 12many: Generalising mathematical index sets.

while after the sed treatment it looks like:


For more info see the tlmgr and sed docs. Credit goes to Norbert Preining, see this thread on comp.tex.live


For the record, if you're using the TeXLive Utility GUI, you can also solve this issue by selecting the Configure > Configure Documentation..., checking the box labeled "Install documentation when updating", and confirming by clicking the Install now button.


(I just ran into this issue after installing BasicTeX and the TeXLive Utility GUI on my Mac, by runnning brew cask install basictex tex-live-utility.)


To add to the existing answers in case TeX Live is installed using apt packages for Ubuntu (instead of a vanilla install using scripts from http://tug.org/texlive/acquire-netinstall.html): there are separate documentation packages available (to be installed with apt). From https://packages.ubuntu.com/bionic/doc/:

texlive-fonts-extra-doc (2017.20180305-2) [universe]
    TeX Live: Documentation files for texlive-fonts-extra
texlive-fonts-recommended-doc (2017.20180305-1)
    TeX Live: Documentation files for texlive-fonts-recommended
texlive-humanities-doc (2017.20180305-2) [universe]
    TeX Live: Documentation files for texlive-humanities
texlive-latex-base-doc (2017.20180305-1)
    TeX Live: Documentation files for texlive-latex-base
texlive-latex-extra-doc (2017.20180305-2) [universe]
    TeX Live: Documentation files for texlive-latex-extra
texlive-latex-recommended-doc (2017.20180305-1)
    TeX Live: Documentation files for texlive-latex-recommended
texlive-metapost-doc (2017.20180305-1)
    TeX Live: Documentation files for texlive-metapost
texlive-pictures-doc (2017.20180305-1)
    TeX Live: Documentation files for texlive-pictures
texlive-pstricks-doc (2017.20180305-2) [universe]
    TeX Live: Documentation files for texlive-pstricks
texlive-publishers-doc (2017.20180305-2) [universe]
    TeX Live: Documentation files for texlive-publishers
texlive-science-doc (2017.20180305-2) [universe]
    TeX Live: Documentation files for texlive-science

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