Subject: Re: useradd: spaces and $ in usernames
To: Hubert Feyrer <>
From: Todd Vierling <>
List: tech-userlevel
Date: 11/15/2001 20:53:37
On Fri, 16 Nov 2001, Hubert Feyrer wrote:

: > Think how many /bin/sh scripts written by third parties, or perhaps even
: > provided by NetBSD, which do a "for user in ..." block.
: With that reasoning, we'll ditch spaces from filenames next, because many
: scripts cannot handle them, right?

Filenames with spaces are things that script writes have coped with for
quite some time.

Usernames, however, have had a specific character limitation for a Very Long
Time, and a whole lot of stuff out there makes assumptions based on that
limitation. Opening up spaces and $s is, IMHO, asking for trouble.

At the very _least_, if you add this `feature', add a compatibility note to
the manpage that indicates that much third party software assumes
alphanumeric/./_/- usernames.

-- Todd Vierling <>  *  Wasabi & NetBSD:  Run with it.
-- CDs, Integration, Embedding, Support --