Mailinglist Archive: opensuse (2459 mails)

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Re: [opensuse] /bin/rm: Argument list too long
It's also possible for there to be discrepencies between the app
being run by xargs, and the rest of the system. Maybe the shell and
the kernel will tolerate up to 4k (I think it's more like 100 or 400
but no matter) so xargs generates 4k command lines, but maybe appfoo
can only handle 1k ?

That's not how it works.

Sure it is.

Xargs deals only in the maximum argument list
limits (number of args and / or total argument bytes). While I can't
say that no command imposes its own limits on the size of arguments

You sure can't.

there's really no reason to do so and I know of no programs that
have internal limits to the size of the argument list they will
successfully process.

Within the very small world of a modern linux distribution where such things as
*conf() exist and sticking to programs supplied by the vendor, maybe you are
indeed hard pressed to find an app that doesn't break that assumption.

Suffice it to say I have seen a larger world.

You have some body of experience, and an assumption that you haven't seen
broken. That is fine and a perfectly reasonable and correct basis for
continuing to operate from that assumption by default. Doing so is called being
efficient and in tune with your environment. But do not mistake that for gospel.

Consider the implications of this for a while:
Why does ./configure run an empirical test, trying progressively larger and
larger command lines until it breaks?

Brian K. White brian@xxxxxxxxx
filePro BBx Linux SCO FreeBSD #callahans Satriani Filk!

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