"Old" Correct Files Should Never Be Future Bugs

There's nothing like a non-error intentionally programmed to be an error to cause a halt of one's work. 🙁 The non-error causing an error is from a well-intended(?) check in LaTeX:

! You are attempting to make a LaTeX format from a source file
! That is more than five years old.
! If you enter <return> to scroll past this message then the format
! will be built, but please consider obtaining newer source files
! before continuing to build LaTeX.

! LaTeX source files more than 5 years old!.

which causes LaTeX to fail (e.g., on Gentoo, Debian, and other systems). While no doubt this "feature" was intended to have people update their systems, it also causes other otherwise working systems to fail just because of a calendar date. There is nothing wrong with running old stuff especially if one is using old files! Moreover a working system configuration must remain so. Errors shouldn't arise simply because of a date check that otherwise is not an error –errors should be detected because there are real functionality issues!

Should you run into this, the easiest quick fix to be back up-and-running is to edit:


so that the if statement in the file (it is near the end):

!  You are attempting to make a LaTeX format from a source file^^J%

is changed to be more than 65 months, e.g., edit 65 to be a much larger number (e.g., "\ifnum\count@>10065").