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Re: Adding -l option to cp

On Fri Jan 28 2011 at 13:11:44 +0000, Valeriy E. Ushakov wrote:
> Antti Kantee <> wrote:
> > On Sun Jan 23 2011 at 13:36:15 +0000, Valeriy E. Ushakov wrote:
> >> core@ - can you please decide if we want to inflict that on our cp(1)
> >> and then we can just import all of them new options at once instead of
> >> people proposing their favorite option every other month?
> > 
> > Dear All,
> > 
> > The core team has decided to generally support adding simple options
> > to utilities when they can be seen to improve compatibility with
> > other Unix-type systems.
> > 
> > This does not mean an automatic ticket to adding all frills from
> > other systems' utilities.  However, it does shift the focal point
> > of the discussion: as much as it is the responsibility of the
> > proposer to present a use case for the new option, it is the
> > responsibility of the person voicing an objection to provide a
> > case where the proposed compatibility option is actively harmful
> > or conflicts with existing standards.  Minor overlap with existing
> > utilities is not considered harmful.
> Are semantic gaps considered harmful?
> I maintain my objection that committing -l in isolation is wrong.  It
> should only be committed along with at least -s and -x.
> -s for obvious hard/soft link symmetry.
> -x b/c linking fails across mount points, so you must have an option
>    to control that aspect to go along with -l

My favorite "gap" in NetBSD is that we have support for gdb and support
for threads, but gdb and threads don't play along quite perfectly (at
least these days they play along somewhat).  However, this gap does not
make gdb or threads undesirable features.

I agree with you that a more complete package is more desirable, but it's
a volunteer project, and if one person found a standalone -l useful,
odds are others might too.  If at a later date someone wants to use cp
-l with -x, one of two things is likely to happen:

        1) they will find the itch unbearable and add support for -x
        2) they will use pax or install gnu utils from pkgsrc

Either way, it will not affect people happily using cp -l or people
happily not using cp -l.

(this email was not discussed in a committee)

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