[tex-k] Speed of kpsewhich when querying the repertories of the TeX installation

jfbu jfbu at free.fr
Thu Apr 30 14:51:26 CEST 2015


upcoming TL2015 brings a great speed improvement to kpsewhich
on Mac OS X system, thanks to Adam Maxwell's analysis of the


but even after this great improvement, querying TEXMFHOME
and similar locations does still take some non vanishing time:

$ time kpsewhich --var-value=TEXMFHOME

real	0m0.090s
user	0m0.081s
sys	0m0.006s

This is on MacBook Air, and I get similar results on a i386 Linux box 

$ time kpsewhich --expand-path '$TEXMFHOME' 

real	0m0.109s
user	0m0.072s
sys	0m0.010s

A tenth of second just to query a repertory location seems
a lot to naive people unaware of the constraints (unknown to me) 

For example, if I want to write a package and provide
a way for the user to install it in a local or user tree, 
I may write a Makefile which will act after querying
the repertories locations. But one tenth of a second
for each kpsewhich call is a lot.

Could it be imagined to have some kpsewhichdir utility
which given TEXMFHOME will *instantly* return either
the environment variable $TEXMFHOME if it exists or the
TEXMFHOME setting as per the various texmf.cnf ?

best wishes


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