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bug#13737: Add -h option to 'users'

From: Eric Blake
Subject: bug#13737: Add -h option to 'users'
Date: Mon, 18 Feb 2013 10:21:54 -0700
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64; rv:17.0) Gecko/20130110 Thunderbird/17.0.2

On 02/18/2013 12:31 AM, anatoly techtonik wrote:
> I don't understand your argument about "unique combination". The main issue
> is that people like me expect -h to work as a --help shortcut. They don't
> have a chance to know "--h" without reading the docs, so --h is not useful.
> And by the way - this --h is not documented.

We HAVE documented it.  We document that ALL long options can be
represented by an unambiguous prefix, so --h is an unambiguous prefix of
--help if there are no other long options beginning with h.

> The bar for adding new short options to the utilities is very high.
> Sorry, but it is an argument. It will be interesting to know why though.

We are reluctant to burn a short option letter on any utility
standardized by POSIX unless there are other non-GNU implementations
that have also burned the same letter for the same purpose.  Prematurely
burning a short option hinders an effort to enhance the standard;
whereas existing practice is a strong argument for implementing
something to make it easier to use GNU as a drop-in replacement that
gives the user freedom over the existing implementation.

> To confirm that argument we'd have to run the poll - if the users expect -h
> to work as --help by default.

Not generally.  The GNU coding standards mandate '--help', they do NOT
mandate '-h'.  More GNU users are used to '--help' than they are for any
short option name.

I am against adding -h as a short option without a lot more
justification than just a single user, since we have had so few requests
for a short option -h over the years.

Eric Blake   eblake redhat com    +1-919-301-3266
Libvirt virtualization library http://libvirt.org

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