Christopher Lee email@example.com
To download the latest version of MiKTeX, go to http://www.miktex.org/setup.html and follow the directions. Be sure to read the MiKTeX Installation Procedure as it gives detailed instructions for downloading and installing the software and is very clear and accurate. The easiest path to take here is to download the setup wizard rather than wade through the ftp archives and try to decide which packages you need to install. If you run into problems, see the FAQ's (so far) below.
I will describe the "setup" that I personally use and find to be workable and efficient. First, you need some sort of plain text editor to write TeX/LaTeX files. Notepad is suitable for this. I use a program called Editor 99. It offers some neat features like customized color pallets for document types and template creation (and it's free!). If you want to search for different text editors, try http://home.arcor.de/itsfd/texwin.htm.
Once you've created your .tex document, open up a dos prompt (Start->Run and type "command"), navigate to the folder you have saved your .tex. document in and type:
You should get a readout of the compilation/rendering sequence, ending with
Output written on filename.dvi (1 page, 3608 bytes).
Transcript written on filename.log.
To view the .dvi that has been produced, type
Solution: Type in "latex filename" instead of "tex filename".
Solution: This means that MiKTeX has not been added to the Windows "path". This is something that should be done automatically when MiKTeK is installed, but for some reason people are still having problems with this. There is essentially one fix, and one workaround.
Open up the directory in which the LaTeX executable is installed (usually in C:\Program Files\MiKTeX\miktex\bin). Right click on the latex.exe and drag it to the desktop, choose to create a shortcut to the executable there. Then, to compile a .tex file, drag the file onto the shortcut you've created, and LaTeX should compile it.
You need to add the MiKTeX directory to the Windows path. Attempt this only if you are comfortable mucking around with "essential" Windows OS files. Find the Autoexec.bat file on your hard drive. Make a copy of it; rename this copy to something you'll recognize if you have to use it later, like Autoexec2.bat. Now, right click on the original Autoexec.bat file, and choose "edit". Add in the following lines of text at the end of whatever is currently there:
set PATH="C:\Program Files\MiKTeX\miktex\bin";%PATH%
Of course, the directory path should be the one latex.exe is located in (as above). Restart, and things should work fine.
Solution: Your installation is probably hosed. Reinstall using the Setup Wizard. If that doesn't work, uninstall, redownload and reinstall MiKTeX.
Solution: This was a huge problem with earlier versions of MiKTeX (pre-2.0). The format files that MiKTeX uses to compile the .tex files are simply too old. Ensure you have downloaded the most current vertion of MiKTeX (2.2 at the time of this writing). It is unclear at this time why this would happen with versions 2.0 and greater, but I am looking into it.
Try the MiKTeX-Users forum at http://sourceforge.net/mailarchive/forum.php?forum_id=10537 and feel free to e-mail me.
Last Date of Modification: 29 Jan. 2003