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Re: cp doesn't overwrite fifos

From: Bob Proulx
Subject: Re: cp doesn't overwrite fifos
Date: Fri, 21 Oct 2005 21:04:01 -0600
User-agent: Mutt/1.5.9i

Jim Meyering wrote:
> >> In this particular case, using the gnu-specific --remove-destination
> >> option will make it do what you want.
> >
> > Ah, i missed that one. What is the advantage of truncating the existing
> > file instead of removing it first?
> For some uses, it's the only approach that works, for example
> if you have write access to a file in a write-protected directory.

Also by copying on top of an existing file all of the existing
permissions are preserved.  If you remove the file first and create a
new one then the file will have permissions as specified by umask.
This is not always what you want.  I know I count on this behavior.

> If you care about atomicity, you might prefer to use rsync.

I am a great fan of rsync and use it often.  Yet when I care about
atomicity I explicitly copy the file off to the side and rename it
into place.  That can be done with standard commands and rsync has not
yet made it to that status.


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