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Re: bash exorcism experiment ('bug' 762923 & 763012)

On Tue, Sep 30, 2014 at 06:23:22PM -0700, Russ Allbery wrote:
> Russell Stuart <russell-debian@stuart.id.au> writes:

> > The only reason I ported things to dash is /bin/sh is now linked to it,
> > which in view makes it the standard shell.  Every script starting with
> > #!/bin/sh must work with.  If I can't get it working because of a
> > missing feature like arrays then I have to change it to #!/bin/bash or
> > something, and add an explicit dependency.

> bash is essential, so from a Debian perspective, you don't need to add an
> extra dependency.  Of course, that's exactly what this thread is about,
> but that's why we're unlikely to ever remove it from the essential set.
> It's a lot of work and archive churn to add all those dependencies, and
> it's not at all clear that we're better off in the end, or at least not
> sufficiently better off to warrant the effort.

However, uses of essential bash can be detected fairly reliably:  just
looking for executable files using /bin/bash as the interpreter should catch
nearly all of them, except for things that need bash at build time, and that
could be addressed by moving bash from Essential to build-essential as a
first step.

So if someone wanted to do the work to analyze use of bash in the archive,
we could at least evaluate how many packages would actually need to be

I do think it's a bug that we have two implementations of POSIX sh in the
essential set, and if someone was willing to do the work to remove bash, I
would welcome it.

Steve Langasek                   Give me a lever long enough and a Free OS
Debian Developer                   to set it on, and I can move the world.
Ubuntu Developer                                    http://www.debian.org/
slangasek@ubuntu.com                                     vorlon@debian.org

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