I'm totally new to LaTeX and similar programs. I'm actually trying to get started with LyX as I want something easy to use and basic.

I'm trying to download the MacTeX 'distribution' (I think that's the name for it), but it requires 4.33GB! This seems very large. Is this the correct size for the distribution, or can I find something smaller elsewhere?

  • I guess that you can install a basic version, not the complete scheme. – Sigur Jan 14 '14 at 19:22
  • Thanks Sigur. Is 4.33GB the correct size for the file, then? – nathan glass Jan 14 '14 at 19:24
  • Welcome to TeX.SX! You can have a look at our starter guide to familiarize yourself further with our format. – jub0bs Jan 14 '14 at 19:24
  • For the complete scheme, yes. With it you will have all the packages to use. – Sigur Jan 14 '14 at 19:25
  • Sigur - I have a further question (not sure if I need to start a new thread for this, but here goes...). I'm being asked to install something to enable 'cc command' - do you know if this is essential? – nathan glass Jan 14 '14 at 19:30

The MacTeX.pkg file available at http://tug.org/mactex/downloading.html is 2.3GB. It will expand to much larger than that. 4.33GB is probably right.

Once you've installed, you can use the TeX Live Utility to update the system, or add new packages.

If you want something smaller, you can look at BasicTeX: http://tug.org/mactex/morepackages.html

You can install BasicTeX with the TeX Live Utility to customize your system to your liking.

| improve this answer | |

According to tug.org (the website of the Tex User Group) the package should approximately be 2.3GB

You could consider downloading BasicTex, a stripped down version of MacTex (~90 MB), and add packages you need using the Tex Live manager which is included.


Ernst Jan

source and more info and download links: tug.org

| improve this answer | |
  • For use with LyX, this is not recommended. – Alan Munn Jan 15 '14 at 1:49
  • @AlanMunn Although not recommended it might be worth considering when on a slow or unstable internet connection. Therefore I did mention it. It is also suggested on the Lyx Wiki: wiki.lyx.org/Mac/Mac#Prerequisite – EJG89 Jan 15 '14 at 9:50

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.