[Tex/LaTex] Can’t seem to get TeX working on the Mac


So I downloaded and installed BasicTeX, then I went and installed TeXLive with some setup options here. However, nothing seems to be working. A few months ago I tried installing MacTeX but to no luck. Now, at school, with very slow internet, I can't commit the time to try a 1.3GB package again. Anyway, installation seemed to go fine, and all the correct files are there in /usr/texbin, but nothing seems to work.

I started by typing \alpha into a document and saving it as untitled.tex

TextMate is telling that TM_LATEX_MASTER has some problems. TeXShop does nothing but display an error box (with nothing in it). If I try to do it from command-line, aka $ pdftex untitled.tex or $ pdflatex untitled.tex doesn't seem to do anything. No error messages, no output, nothing.

So I'm lost here. This is the second or third time I've attempted to get LaTeX working on my Mac, but nothing will work for me. Any pointers?

Best Answer

(Turning a comment which seemed to help into an answer here)

BasicTeX is a TeXLive installation, the linked document just explains how it was put together. So you don't need to run TeXLive installer after installing BasicTeX.

So my suggestion is to start from a clean slate, and just (re)installing BasicTeX.

As it is TeXLive, you can manage it with tlmgr.