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Re: [coreutils] RFC for adding file creation mode feature into touch uti

From: Rakib Mullick
Subject: Re: [coreutils] RFC for adding file creation mode feature into touch utility.
Date: Sat, 8 Jan 2011 12:44:23 +0600

On Sat, Jan 8, 2011 at 12:06 PM, Bob Proulx <address@hidden> wrote:
> Rakib Mullick wrote:
>> Yes, right. Then, touch only supposed to change file's timestamp. No?
>> But, touch also creates a file for us. Not only it creates a file for
>> us, when it creates a file it takes reference from other files.
> Yes.  That is what touch does.
>> So, althrough we're in philosophy of one-tool-do-one-job-well, there
>> are something else that we can get.
> What did you mean to say there?  That didn't parse for me.

Don't get me wrong. I do have full respect for this philosophy. I
wanted to mean that, there are some extra functionality we often
export for our good.

> It is also to not duplicate functionality in every tool.  Otherwise
> every tool that creates files would need a --mode override.  That
> would definitely be too much.
I'm not sure how many tools out there for creating file (except those
for creating special files, tmp files etc.). I think touch is mostly
used for creating general purpose file and that is why I proposed to
have touch this kind of option.

>> And if adding --mode option to touch gets really out of philosophy,
>> then I think we need a new tool to for creating file with all the
>> options that we might have want. That will truly help us to keep the
>> philosophy intact.
> No.  That doesn't follow at all.  The Unix philosophy isn't just that
> tools should do one thing and do it well but also that functionality
> shouldn't be duplicated all over the place.  Creating yet another tool
> to do the task doesn't make sense when you can touch and chmod
> already.  That other tool you propose would be a duplication of
> chmod.  And that is the problem here too.  Should every tool that
> creates files have a --mode override?
I'm not sure which other tools you are reffering. mkdir, mknod already
have --mode option and in my subject I have clearly specify about
touch utility.

> And for that matter I have yet to see a rationale for using --mode
> here in a real example that can't be satisified simply by using an
> appropriate umask.
>> > Why would one prefer the GNU-specific touch --mode ...
>> > over the portable combination of touch and chmod?
>> Cause its easier to do 'touch --mode xxx filename' than 'touch
>> filename' and 'chmod xxx'.
> I disagree.  Doing the touch followed by chmod is the more obvious
> way.  And for many decades the standard way.  And therefore easier to
> maintain.
If you disagree, I really don't have to say anything. And I also
disagree with your obvious way. Utility should something that reflects
user needs, offcourse maintaining all the standards. Programmers does
the tough job to make user's life easier, not how a programmer can
make a life harder for user.

>> And Eric also pointed out that we will be able to do 'touch -r a -M
>> b' to create a referenced file with different mode.
> I am not strongly opposed to having this added to the code.  But to me
> this looks like a solution looking for a problem to solve.  It is the
> type of thing that if I ever saw actually used in a script that I
> would immediately edit into their standard touch and chmod versions
> without giving it a second thought.
I was pointing to the advantage of adding this feature. Maybe we'll
find more when it will be in action. :)

> Bob

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