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terminology: execution domain, personality


the German translation team startet the effort to update the German manpage
translations. There was a critical response to my initial German version of

>> #: ../english/manpages-dev/man2/personality.2:45
>> msgid ""
>> "Linux supports different execution domains, or personalities, for each "
>> "process.  Among other things, execution domains tell Linux how to map"
>> "signal numbers into signal actions. The execution domain system allows " >> "Linux to provide limited support for binaries compiled under other Unix-like "
>> operating systems."

Am I wrong to say that "execution domain" and "personality" are different names
for the same thing?

If I am right, should rewriting the paragraph be considered?

And most important: how can these terms by described in other words to get
a translation that doesn't just import another English technical term?

I found something from the founder of the Linux manpages project, Andries
E. Brouwer:


Linux has the concept of /personality/ of an executable (since 1.1.20). The
purpose is to make the Linux environment more similar to some other
environment, like BSD or SCO or Solaris or older Linux, so that foreign
or old binaries have better chances of working without modification.

To me it sounds like some kind of adaption of the process environment. I
would describe execution domain as "customized process execution environment".

Any technical and linguistic insight is appreciated.

Kind regards

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