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Re: Possible bug in Gawk 3.1.3-7 under Fedora Core 2

From: Andrew J. Schorr
Subject: Re: Possible bug in Gawk 3.1.3-7 under Fedora Core 2
Date: Fri, 9 Jul 2004 16:00:19 -0400
User-agent: Mutt/1.4.1i


On Fri, Jul 09, 2004 at 01:42:56PM -0600, Richard Nolde wrote:
>    That does in fact make it work, but why the change and when was it
> documented?  The sample on page 230 of "Sed and Awk" 2nd edition by
> Doughtery and Robbins (who ought to know) uses the quoted external
> command but without any  variable interpolation. eg "date", so it
> is unclear that the parens now need to be added to scripts that
> worked before.

If you look in the gawk info manual here:


you will see that you are strongly cautioned to use parentheses
with string concatenation because the order of evaluation for
concatenation is undefined.

So I'm not sure why the behavior changed, but it looks like you really
need parentheses to guarantee that it will continue to work as desired.


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