Subject: Re: bugs and/or misfeatures in namei changes
To: der Mouse <>
From: John F. Woods <>
List: current-users
Date: 05/11/1997 19:54:29
> Why is the POSIX way necessarily Right?  If POSIX requires this bizarre
> behavior of cp, as described by several people, then I think POSIX is
> broken badly enough that conformance to this aspect of it is not worth
> the damage it requires.

Speaking as the original complainer here, to repeat a point that has been made
dozens of times:  POSIX compliance makes it possible for implementors to write
programs without caring what OS they're writing for; it makes it possible for
us to benefit *instantly* from the work of a large number of people as long
as they write their applications to rely on the promises POSIX makes.  This
is crucial for commercial software ("better but nonstandard" just doesn't
cut it with commercial developers, trust me on this[1]), and helpful even for
publically-available software (since you don't have to go through it and
port it to NetBSD).

"We're almost standard but better in small and annoying ways" is why UNIX
fragmented to the point where MS-DOS was able to conquer the world.  You
can always "repair" NetBSD in the privacy of your own machine room, of course;
just don't be surprised when you start having trouble porting software to it
because you've "repaired" things that applications writers don't think are

At least System V is effectively dead, and won't be injuring future standards.

[1] Look how far "better but nonstandard" got UNOS...