I am new to Mac OS and I used to work with MikTex on Windows.

As a habit inherited from Windows, I'd like to install MacTex distribution on the other partition of the hard drive other than the one where system has been installed.

Is there a possibility to achieve this target?

  • Untested: install MacTeX normally, copy /usr/local/texlive to the other partition and then replace the original directory with a symbolic link to the one in the partition. – Alan Munn Mar 1 '14 at 0:58
  • @AlanMunn Sorry for the dumb question, but how can I access /usr/..., do you mean using terminal? The later part is where I am totally lost. Where can I set up the symbolic link? – newbie Mar 1 '14 at 1:29
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    I really don't recommend doing this unless you are comfortable at the command line. Note that following this suggestion will not exclude installed files from your system partition because MacTeX also installs things in other places e.g. /Library/PreferencePanes and something like /usr/texbin although I forget the details etc. Note that /usr/local is intended for non-system software. That's where well-behaved third-party stuff installs itself. – cfr Mar 1 '14 at 3:52
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    It would be better to ask: what corresponds on a Mac to installing on a separate partition on Windows? And the answer will not be: installing on a separate partition. Ask: why do I have this habit? Probably because it is best practice on Windows. So, ask: what is best practice in OS X? Doing things according to habits formed on Windows is dangerous. You will worry about risks which don't exist while failing to take precautions against the dangers you should worry about. – cfr Mar 1 '14 at 3:56
  • Perhaps I should add: I am not saying separate partitions are a bad thing. I do have TeX Live on a separate partition. But I'm using Linux. I would not recommend doing it on OS X, at least without a good basic understanding of Darwin. Personally, I would be a lot more bothered about the fact that MacTeX installs TeX Live with root ownership of /usr/local/texlive which is not recommended by upstream. I wouldn't be especially worried by this. But I would be more worried about this than about installing to the same partition as the OS. – cfr Mar 1 '14 at 4:02

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