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bug#55837: Options `-p` and `--tmpdir` behave differently

From: Bernhard Voelker
Subject: bug#55837: Options `-p` and `--tmpdir` behave differently
Date: Wed, 8 Jun 2022 19:11:59 +0200
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64; rv:91.0) Gecko/20100101 Thunderbird/91.9.1

tag 55837 notabug
close 55837

On 6/8/22 02:28, Klaatu wrote:
According to the man page, `--tmpfile` is the long option for `-p`
However, I get different results when using one or the other.
The `-p` option results in success:

$ mktemp -p ~/Demo
$ mktemp -p ~/Demo XXX

However, `--tempdir` results in failure:

$ mktemp --tmpdir ~/Demo
mktemp: too few X's in template ‘/home/klaatu/Demo’
$ mktemp --tmpdir ~/Demo XXX
mktemp: too many templates
Try 'mktemp --help' for more information.

The option --tmpdir is indeed the long option for -p, but it has to be used with
it's argument following immediately and beginning after the '=' character:

  $ mktemp --help | grep -- '-p.*tmpdir'
    -p DIR, --tmpdir[=DIR]  interpret TEMPLATE relative to DIR; if DIR is not

As the documentation states, the argument is optional, and therefore `mktemp`
took ~/Demo as pattern instead of argument to --tmpdir.

Use `mktemp --tmpdir=/some/dir` instead.

$ mktemp --tmpdir='~/Demo' XXX
mktemp: failed to create file via template ‘~/Demo/XXX’: No such file or

In this last code example, `mktemp` will receive the '~/Demo' literally because
the calling shell doesn't replace it with the real path (like 
as it usually would do without the quoting; therefore `mktemp` fails to create
a file there.

The program works as specified, and therefore I'm marking this as not a bug.

Have a nice day,

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