I need to install LaTex on my Ubuntu 18.04 LTS machine as dependency for Softcover.
In the Softcover manual it is written that building PDF books requires installing LaTeX (specifically, the xelatex executable, which is a Unicode-friendly PDF builder).
According to Linuxconfig.org, there are several LaTex packages that can be installed in Ubuntu. The full installation (texlive-full) requires 4714 MB, which is huge, while texlive and texlive-latex-extra require respectively 240 MB and 404 MB.
The Softcover Dockerfile installs texlive-latex-extra AND texlive-full together, which looks odd.
I wrote to the Softcover Google User Group but did not receive a satisfying answer.
What would you suggest, considering that the documentation says that Softcover only needs the xelatex executable and I do not need the Japanese language pack? Are the xelatex commands installed by the various package different? What makes texlive-full so big in respect to texlive and texlive-latex-extra?

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    You could consider installing 'vanilla' TeX Live (using the TeX Live installer script, so not using any distribution packages from Debian/Ubuntu), see tex.stackexchange.com/questions/200209/…. However, if you do want distribution packages then texlive-full is the safest (although it does not cover everything, for example latexmk is a separate package I think). It is big mainly because it contains documentation for everything (2.0GB of pdf manuals). – Marijn Apr 13 at 15:54
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    You may be able to install the packages without documentation, see tex.stackexchange.com/questions/66348/… for some pointers. – Marijn Apr 13 at 15:54

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