The Azimuth Project
Installing a standalone math-understanding Maruku

Installing a standalone math-understanding Maruku


This collects some information about how to install a standalone program for writing and previewing Instiki pages on the local machine. Note this is much deliberately less functionality than a full Instiki install.

Why might someone want to do this?

Possible reasons are:

  1. Being able to prepare pages without a network connection.

  2. Being able to preview and debug issues like equations without having to put the page onto the wiki (where, e.g., someone may edit it whilst you’re previewing).

  3. On a low-power machine, the browser’s text-editing widget may be glacially slow. Even if it’s acceptable, it still lacks functionality like the search and replace of a full text editor.

Specific platform instructions

Linux steps

The biggest difficulty is that the program is composed of multiple components and different components use slightly different names for the other pieces (particuarly interchanging to for 2 and changing case).

Note that (i) this is what I did, possibly not what I should have done; (ii) the paths included may change slightly if using slightly different versions of the components; (iii) things like env may need to be changed if you’re not using bash.

  • Install the ruby language and runtime using the OS packager.

  • Download the itex2MML package from
  • Install the itex2MML binary, probably by going into the itex-src directory to make and install it, as per the README (as the prebuilt binaries didn’t work for me).

  • Install the maruku gem using

gem install maruku
and test with
env RUBYLIB=/var/lib/gems/1.8/gems/maruku-0.6.0/lib/ maruku --version
  • In the source directory itex-src of the itex2MML tarball run
gem install itextomml
  • The entire ensemble should now run (on some content file you’ve prepared named filename) with
env RUBYLIB=/var/lib/gems/1.8/gems/maruku-0.6.0/lib/:/var/lib/gems/1.8/gems/itextomml-1.4.5/lib maruku -m itex2mml filename
  • You can now set RUBYLIB in the appropriate environment setup script.

category: meta