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Was not sure if this should go here or on TeX Stackexchange. Feel free to move if I made mistake. My setup is: GNU/Linux, kernel 2.6.32-5-686, CrunchBang Linux statler. I have installed xetex through apt-get (texlive-xetex). Problem is that whenever I try to compile a .tex file which LaTeX will compile without problems, I get the following from xetex:

This is XeTeX, Version 3.1415926-2.2-0.9995.2 (TeX Live 2009/Debian) (Fatal format file error; I'm stymied)

I have installed xelatex, my latex version is

me@box:~$ latex --version pdfTeX 3.1415926-1.40.10-2.2 (TeX Live 2009/Debian) kpathsea version 5.0.0

Version of xelatex is

asha@andromeda:~$ xelatex --version XeTeX 3.1415926-2.2-0.9995.2 (TeX Live 2009/Debian) kpathsea version 5.0.0

Searching, this seems to be related to a recent update to zlib, version zlib-1.2.6. Source. Other posts reveal that other programs have been affected as well, but I have not been able to find a description of a solution I can use. There was one example where someone reported on seuccessfully linking to the older version of zlib when building the tool in question from sources. This might be a bit above my Linux skills for now.

What can I do with my present distro and setup to have xetex working ?

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There's a bug report in that, apparently it has been fixed in unstable (according to this, also in testing), no idea what Crunchbang uses... so maybe your problem will fix itself soon. – sr_ Mar 18 '12 at 10:30
Thank you. Updating texlive-binaries and texlive-xetex to the versions mentioned in your links makes it work for me. MAke your comment a reply and I will mark it as the answer. – Michael Ras Mar 18 '12 at 12:12
up vote 2 down vote accepted

There's a bug report on this issue in Debian's bug tracking system, mentioning that Debian's unstable repositories already have fixed packages (and the package databases shows that they already hit the Debian/testing repos). Since Crunchbang 10 "Statler" is based on Debian/stable, these fixed packages could take some time to be available there; you can however mix-and-match if you're a little careful (see e.g. this question).

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