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sys/param.h not checked for by configure

From: John E. Malmberg
Subject: sys/param.h not checked for by configure
Date: Sun, 29 Jul 2012 17:57:52 -0500
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (Windows NT 6.1; WOW64; rv:13.0) Gecko/20120614 Thunderbird/13.0.1

Hello all,

The header file sys/param.h is not checked for by configure and is not provided by the VMS environment.

I have worked around this issue by having the VMS specific build script create an empty substitute file.

The HP VMS Engineering team has indicated a willingness to add the sys/param.h file to the operating system in a future release or patch kit, but has a problem.

There does not seem to be a standards document as to what exactly should be in this header file.

The sys/param.h header file is mentioned at The Open Group web site as existing in some implementations, but I can not find any definition for it.

http://pubs.opengroup.org/onlinepubs/009604599/basedefs/sys/stat.h.html is the reference.

The Linux System Base navigator shows it as defining two macros for constants by name. I can not find in the Linux system Base definition explorer any description about what those two macros represent in a conforming implementation. It also does not mention the constant value that The Open Group link states could be in that file.


Falling back to a search on general usage gives some views on the two constants of MAXPATHLEN and NOFILE, as being for the maximum size of a file specification and the number of open files, but no references to a standards organization.

It did find one post that claimed that the Linux value of 4096 for MAXPATHLEN was wrong, and that it was easy to create longer paths.

For current VMS versions, MAXPATHLEN is 4096 and NOFILE is 65535. The actual limit on files is usually set by a quota to that can be retrieved by getdtablesize() and is typically only a few thousand at most, so the NOFILE value is not that useful.

MAXPATHLEN appears to be a duplicate for the macros PATH_MAX and FILENAME_MAX that are defined in other standard headers.

So does anyone know of a link to a reference standard about what should be in the sys/param.h file.

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