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Re: default skel files (Re: PAGER=less)

On Sat, Oct 15, 2011 at 03:46:44PM -0400, John Hawkinson wrote:
 >>> These are actively harmful, because they train users to depend on a
 >>> safety net that may not exist on other systems. That's bad.
 >> true, they shouldn't be uncommented by default.
 > My opinion is stronger than that.
 > By leaving them there commented out, we suggest they might be a good
 > idea and that some users might want to uncomment them, just as they
 > would uncomment the changing of EDITOR.
 > But I think that we would be teaching users a terribly bad habit that
 > will come back to haunt them in the future, so we should not be making
 > an implicit recommendation.
 > Having them there commented out is dangerous, IMO we should not do it.

They are a good idea, just as tcsh's "set rmstar" feature is a good
idea. Unlike rm -i, they ~never go off by accident or under routine
circumstances, so they don't produce a habit of always typing 'y'.

As far as the habit of getting used to having the protection... that's
only bad if the feature isn't always available, which as far as I know
is not the case, or isn't always configured, which is pretty much the
user's responsibility.

As for rm -i, probably it shouldn't be provided even commented out;
however, it's common enough that it would be more useful to include it
along with a rant about why it's dangerous.

David A. Holland

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