Subject: Re: echo -n vs. echo ... \c
To: None <>
From: Bruce J.A. Nourish <>
List: tech-pkg
Date: 04/06/2004 21:52:20
On Tue, Apr 06, 2004 at 04:14:10PM -0400, Todd Vierling wrote:
> Regarding the Linux patch posted about echo, and related things:
> Interix does indeed have an "echo" that doesn't recognize "-n" at all.  In
> fact, the SUSv2/OGBS6 definition of "echo" explicitly *dis*allows the use of
> "-n", and requires use of trailing "\c" instead.  So "\c" is, in effect, the
> Unix(tm) Standard....

"It is not possible to use echo portably across all POSIX systems unless
both -n (as the first argument) and escape sequences are omitted."


> Perhaps a better idea would be to check the pkgsrc-supported platforms for
> availability of "\c"?

As a practical matter, I think that the traditional BSD "echo -n"
behaviour is more commonly used and supported. Why don't we just
put our echo in bootstrap-pkgsrc and provide it as "nbecho" for
those systems that need it?

Alternatively, tell the people using those platforms to get an 
appropriate echo (builtin or standalone) before using pkgsrc.
Bruce J.A. Nourish <>
SDF Public Access UNIX System -