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Re: possible compgen bug

From: Chet Ramey
Subject: Re: possible compgen bug
Date: Sat, 10 May 2008 22:13:59 -0400
User-agent: Thunderbird (Macintosh/20080421)

Nicholas Mc Guire wrote:

probably errornous behavior:

when using compgen to allow shortcuts (in the below example for quit and
exit I get a strange behavior when no input is entered and write times
out after 5 seconds:

#! /bin/bash

read -p "timeout 5 > " -t 5 FOO
CMD=( $(compgen -W "quit exit" -- $FOO) )

if [ "$CMD"x == exitx ] ; then
   echo exiting
elif [ "$CMD"x == quitx ] ; then
   echo quit not a valid command calling exit with -1
   exit -1
   echo invalid command - exiting with -2
   exit -2

hofrat@backup:~/shell$ ./2.sh
timeout 5 > quit not a valid command calling exit with -1

it seems to expand CMD to quit - not the behavior I expected

I assume that this is a bug in compgen as it indentifies an empty string
with the first word in the options passed - I would have expected it to be
a null-string (just as if one would type x, which has no match, thus the
null-string is assigned to CMD)

When it is not supplied any word to complete, compgen displays all
possible completions -- in this case, the words supplied to `-W'.  This
is what happens when you perform filename completion after no characters
have been typed, for instance.  You can see this by running the compgen

$ compgen -W "quit exit" -- $FOO

Since the assignment to CMD makes it an array, it as if you assigned
CMD=(quit exit).

You use $CMD in the rest of the script, which is the same as ${CMD[0]},
or `quit'.

``The lyf so short, the craft so long to lerne.'' - Chaucer
                       Live Strong.  No day but today.
Chet Ramey, ITS, CWRU    chet@case.edu    http://cnswww.cns.cwru.edu/~chet/

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