[aur-general] Why /etc/issue starts with invisible chars?

Lyman lymanrb at gmail.com
Fri Mar 21 02:29:23 EDT 2008

Hi, all

I found this issue when I was trying Sysmonitor in the package 
screenlets because Sysmonitor can not show my distribution name correctly.

At the beginning I thought that it was a bug of screenlets, however, 
when I dug into its source code, I realized that it could be a "bug" 
introduced by Archlinux because the /etc/issue starts with some 
invisible chars.

Here's the hexdump of /etc/issue in Archlinux. It is obviously that the 
first line in this file is not the distribution name.

00000000  1b 5b 48 1b 5b 32 4a 0a  41 72 63 68 20 4c 69 6e 
|.[H.[2J.Arch Lin|
00000010  75 78 20 28 43 6f 72 65  20 44 75 6d 70 29 20 20  |ux (Core 
Dump)  |
00000020  5c 72 20 20 28 5c 6e 29  20 28 5c 6c 29 0a 0a     |\r  (\n) 

I've checked other two distribution, CentOS and Ubuntu (that's all I 
have at the moment), both of them presents the their name in the first line.

I guess most of the applications just use the first line in /etc/issue 
as distribution name (so do screenlets). I think Archlinux should comply 
with "Rule of Least Surprise" on this issue. If the invisible chars are 
just for clearing screen, we can do that from the second line.


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