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Re: portability of xargs

From: Mike Frysinger
Subject: Re: portability of xargs
Date: Mon, 14 Feb 2022 23:03:36 -0500

On 14 Feb 2022 19:53, Paul Eggert wrote:
> On 2/14/22 19:45, Mike Frysinger wrote:
> > how portable is xargs ?
> It can be a porting problem, unfortunately. There are several corner 
> cases that various implementations don't get right. I expect this is why 
> the GNU Coding Standards exclude xargs from the list of programs that 
> 'configure' and Makefile rules can use.

are the corner cases known ?  if it's such that xargs doesn't always correctly
limit itself to the system limit based on other factors, i can live with that
assuming that the -n option is reliable.

the trouble here is that in order to implement its own xargs logic, Automake
has to expand things exactly once.  atm, it happens when invoking rm, but if
we want to partition things up, they have to be expanded first once, and then
passed to the command directly.  without shell arrays or other fancy tools,
this is difficult to pull off :(.

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