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RE: coreutils rm - win32 native port

From: Eric Blake
Subject: RE: coreutils rm - win32 native port
Date: Wed, 15 Aug 2007 03:50:37 +0000

> - I tried Mingw's MSYS now; it suffers from the problems similar to
> cygwin's: needs to be installed and needs a DLL.

MSYS is a collection of mingw apps along with a shell; it encompasses
several features including file name munging, above what a simple
mingw application normally does.  Using mingw does not require
using MSYS.  But complaints about MSYS or mingw are better
directed at their mailing list, rather than here.

> - Why shouldn't coreutils accept native win32 ports?

Because the GNU Coding Standards do not require bending backwards
to support proprietary systems.  It is counterproductive to our philosophy
to add #ifdefs all over the portable code just for one non-free platform
that does not believe in following standards.


> GNU make does.

Only because someone volunteers to maintain it.

> I think
> native win32 support should be an objective of the project;

And you are entitled to that opinion.  However, Jim, as the primary
maintainer, is of the contrary opinion that upstream coreutils is easier
to maintain if it sticks to non-proprietary, portable APIs, and I agree
with him.

> if not, the
> situation I described before won't be solved: win32 users will have endless
> choices of non-standard, not-entirely-working ports.

That all depends on your definition of non-working.  In my opinion,
the cygwin port of coreutils works just fine (but I am a bit biased,
as I maintain the cygwin port).

Eric Blake

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