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Mysterious hidden end of line characters.

From: David
Subject: Mysterious hidden end of line characters.
Date: Sat, 26 Jan 2008 18:14:51 +0100
User-agent: Mutt/1.5.13 (2006-08-11)

I have a strange problem with invisible end of line characters.

Yesterday I was trying to configure GRASS6.3 using the following
single line of code.

CFLAGS=-O2 ./configure \
         --with-gdal=/usr/bin/gdal-config \
         --with-tcltk \
         --with-tcltk-includes=/usr/include/tcl8.4 \
         --x-includes=/usr/include/X11 \
        --with-postgres-includes=/usr/include/postgresql \
        --with-freetype-includes=/usr/include/freetype2 \
        --x-includes=/usr/include/X11 \
        --x-libraries=/usr/lib/X11 \
        --with-libs=/usr/lib64 \
        --with-blas \
        --with-mysql \
        --with-mysql-includes=/usr/include/mysql \
        --with-cxx \
        --with-freetype \
        --with-freetype-includes=/usr/include/freetype2 \
        --with-readline \
        --with-sqlite \
        --with-tiff \
        --with-x \
         --with-odbc \
        --enable-64bit \
        2>&1 | tee config_log.txt

Normally the \ character tells the shell not to execute the line but
to wait for the next line and execture them as one, so everything
above is seen by the computer as a single line. Right?

Well, not on my computer.  Each time I copied the lines from emacs to
a terminal (konsole) for some reason the \ was being over riden and
the terminal tried executing the code one line at a time. My effort to
configure GRASS failled until I removed every \ and collapsed
everything down to the following single line.

CFLAGS=-O2 ./configure --with-gdal=/usr/bin/gdal-config --with-tcltk 
--with-tcltk-includes=/usr/include/tcl8.4 --x-includes=/usr/include/X11 
--with-freetype-includes=/usr/include/freetype2 --x-includes=/usr/include/X11 
--x-libraries=/usr/lib/X11 --with-libs=/usr/lib64 --with-blas --with-mysql 
--with-mysql-includes=/usr/include/mysql --with-cxx --with-freetype 
--with-freetype-includes=/usr/include/freetype2 --with-readline --with-sqlite 
--with-tiff --with-x --with-odbc --enable-64bit 2>&1 | tee config_log.txt

A colleage then complained to me saying I had some kind of invisible
character at the end of each line of a shell script (naturally, writen
in emacs) that I'd sent him. He was having to guess where each of
these nasty characters was and delete them line by line.  I think he
has emacs on Ubuntu, I am running emacs21 on Debian etch.

How might I try to identify what is going on here?


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