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bug#12148: 24.1.50; Tramp has problems with Solaris server (test -e)

From: Carsten Bormann
Subject: bug#12148: 24.1.50; Tramp has problems with Solaris server (test -e)
Date: Mon, 6 Aug 2012 17:23:26 +0200

Please describe exactly what actions triggered the bug, and
the precise symptoms of the bug.  If you can, give a recipe
starting from `emacs -Q':

-- find a file via tramp on a Solaris 5.11 server (e.g., .bash_history)
-- exit emacs, so that a .emacs.d/tramp is written
-- find the file again

-> Error Couldn't find exit status of `test -e /users/home/cabo/.bash_history'

Solaris /bin/sh does not support test -e.
Worse, there is strange behavior when you use it:

bash$ /bin/sh
$ test -e foo ; echo $?
test: argument expected

So anything after the failing test does not get executed, which appears to 
destroy tramp's
exit status management.

This appears to get circumvented correctly once, but the .emacs.d/tramp
written out from the first emacs says:

  ("file-exists" "test -e")

which is clearly wrong.
So the next incarnation of emacs will no longer work correcly with that
Solaris server.

Workaround: kill emacs, edit ~/.emacs.d/tramp to say

  ("file-exists" "/bin/test -e")

and restart emacs.
(Because of the caching in .emacs.d/tramp and the behavior of writing out the 
tramp file during kill-emacs, this can be very confusing to debug.  It took me 
a while to understand that the "works/doesn't work/works/doesn't work" behavior 
can only be explained by to the tramp file written out with bad information.)

In GNU Emacs (x86_64-apple-darwin, NS apple-appkit-1038.36)
 of 2012-08-04 on bob.porkrind.org
Bzr revision: 109423 address@hidden
Windowing system distributor `Apple', version 10.3.1187
Configured using:
 `configure '--host=x86_64-apple-darwin' '--build=i686-apple-darwin'
 '--with-ns' 'build_alias=i686-apple-darwin'
 'host_alias=x86_64-apple-darwin' 'CC=gcc -mmacosx-version-min=10.5''

Important settings:
  value of $LC_CTYPE: UTF-8
  locale-coding-system: utf-8-unix
  default enable-multibyte-characters: t

Major mode: Dired by name

Minor modes in effect:
  shell-dirtrack-mode: t
  tooltip-mode: t
  mouse-wheel-mode: t
  tool-bar-mode: t
  menu-bar-mode: t
  file-name-shadow-mode: t
  global-font-lock-mode: t
  font-lock-mode: t
  blink-cursor-mode: t
  auto-composition-mode: t
  auto-encryption-mode: t
  auto-compression-mode: t
  line-number-mode: t
  transient-mark-mode: t

Recent input:
C-x C-f / a : <return> <return> <help-echo> <menu-bar> 
<help-menu> <send-emacs-bug-report>

Recent messages:
For information about GNU Emacs and the GNU system, type C-h C-a.
Tramp: Opening connection for a using scpc...
Tramp: Sending command `exec ssh   -o 
-o ControlMaster=yes -e none a'

Tramp: Waiting for prompts from remote shell
Tramp: Sending command `exec ssh   -o 
-o ControlMaster=yes -e none a'
Tramp: Found remote shell prompt on `a'
Tramp: Opening connection for a using scpc...done
ls does not support --dired; see `dired-use-ls-dired' for more details.
byte-code: Couldn't find exit status of `test -e /users/home/cabo/.bash_history'

Load-path shadows:
None found.

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