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Re: /bin/sh - /bin/bash

On %M %N, Christian Schwarz wrote
>Hi folks!
>Let me try to summarize this discussion:
> 1. Currently, /bin/sh is symlinked to /bin/bash on _every_ new installed
>Debian system, since /bin/sh is installed with the bash package, which is
>in our base system.
>    Thus, I wouldn't consider it as a bug if a package (currently) uses
>/bin/sh as bash. (We might change this, perhaps.)
>  [ snip ]
> 3. In which situation would /bin/sh be another shell than bash? AFAICS,
>this can only be if the sysadmin has manually re-linked /bin/sh to another
>So the real question is if we support step 3. If we would do so, we would
>have to write down a list about which shells are supported as /bin/sh, so
>that the maintainers could check their scripts against these shells. Only
>these shells would be "supported" as replacement for /bin/sh .
>Note, that this would be a policy change which would cause a lot of work
>for our maintainers. So we should only make it, if really necessary.

Don't forget the suggestion that we simply require /bin/sh to be
any POSIX-compliant bourne shell look-alike.  Then, if existing
scripts assume non-POSIX, bash-specific features, the first line
of these scripts would simply need to be updated to /bin/bash.

Regardless, everthing already assumes the use of /bin/bash, and
if you want to asume that /bin/bash is installed on _every_ new
installed Debian system (as you mentioned above), then it should
be possible to just run a sed script on every script everywhere,
replacing any first lines that look like "#!/bin/sh\(.*\)$" with
"#!/bin/bash\1".  Then, who really cares what a sysadmin wants to
make /bin/sh be or point to.  As long as bash is a required
package that basically everything else pre-depends upon (which it
already is, effectively).

Granted, each packager has to do the sed invocation to his/her
own stuff, but it's a pretty simple task.

   - rick

Richard Kilgore                     |  rkilgore@ece.utexas.edu
Electrical & Computer Engineering   |  http://lore.ece.utexas.edu/~rkilgore/
The University of Texas at Austin   |  (512) 471-8011

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