[arch-general] A good time to switch to dash as /bin/sh?

Drake Wilson drake at dasyatidae.net
Fri Sep 26 16:54:44 UTC 2014

On 26/09/14 11:16, Leonid Isaev wrote:
> $ head -n1 /usr/bin/mkinitcpio 
> #!/bin/bash
> ---
> So, yes ArchLinux core tools use and will continue to use 'bashisms' because
> they are convenient.

Right, and I'm more or less fine with that _because_ of the above shebang line,
and I'm also fine with bash being an essential package.  When I say "bashism"
I mean in the specific sense of "programs that assume that /bin/sh is bash and
casually break otherwise because they haven't been tested with anything else",
not "all bash scripting in general", nor even "programs that assume /bin/sh is
bash because it's been established as policy by some other means".  Assumptions
that happen to hold in too many cases by accident become dangerous cognitive
shortcuts, and letting them get entrenched without thinking about them leads to
bizarre, inescapable compatibility situations getting worse and impeding any
further development.

I admit feeling a bit insulted having my mail quoted as a "witch hunt".  The
recent events were only a trigger to reëxamine something I'd considered doing
ever since the first install a long while back.

   ---> Drake Wilson

More information about the arch-general mailing list