GNU bug report logs - #33113
ls: incorrect quoting of "="

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Package: coreutils; Reported by: Vincent Lefevre <vincent@HIDDEN>; Keywords: confirmed; dated Sun, 21 Oct 2018 23:45:02 UTC; Maintainer for coreutils is bug-coreutils@HIDDEN.
Changed bug title to 'ls: incorrect quoting of "="' from 'incorrect and inconsistent quoting in ls output' Request was from Assaf Gordon <assafgordon@HIDDEN> to control <at> debbugs.gnu.org. Full text available.
Added tag(s) confirmed. Request was from Assaf Gordon <assafgordon@HIDDEN> to control <at> debbugs.gnu.org. Full text available.

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Subject: Re: bug#33113: incorrect and inconsistent quoting in ls output
To: Paul Eggert <eggert@HIDDEN>, Vincent Lefevre <vincent@HIDDEN>
References: <20181021233440.GC25339@HIDDEN>
 <41e01873-ad78-3f76-7a8f-a036bb5fa733@HIDDEN>
 <20181022084457.GE25339@HIDDEN>
 <cfbbebee-19b8-dd02-6748-5ede4384309f@HIDDEN>
 <301b9c72-1c72-9c46-0566-569e34579ea4@HIDDEN>
 <20181028132102.GK25339@HIDDEN>
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From: Assaf Gordon <assafgordon@HIDDEN>
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Date: Sun, 28 Oct 2018 21:48:08 -0600
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Hello,

On 2018-10-28 2:11 p.m., Paul Eggert wrote:
> 
> That's right, we need another way to escape classifier characters with 
> -bF, since the current method is clearly wrong.
[...]
> This works because in ISO C "b""=" is equivalent to "b=". We should do 
> this only with characters at the end, because it's not needed elsewhere 
> and the "" is annoying.

Not sure if this is relevant,
but while going over old bugs I noticed this:

   Bug in 'ls -FQ': incorrectly quoted characters
   http://bugs.gnu.org/29832

Which reports incorrect quoting of "@" as "\@"
and also mentions "ls -b", and had a pending patch which was
never committed.

regards,
  -assaf







Information forwarded to bug-coreutils@HIDDEN:
bug#33113; Package coreutils. Full text available.

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Subject: Re: bug#33113: incorrect and inconsistent quoting in ls output
To: Vincent Lefevre <vincent@HIDDEN>
References: <20181021233440.GC25339@HIDDEN>
 <41e01873-ad78-3f76-7a8f-a036bb5fa733@HIDDEN>
 <20181022084457.GE25339@HIDDEN>
 <cfbbebee-19b8-dd02-6748-5ede4384309f@HIDDEN>
 <301b9c72-1c72-9c46-0566-569e34579ea4@HIDDEN>
 <20181028132102.GK25339@HIDDEN>
From: Paul Eggert <eggert@HIDDEN>
Organization: UCLA Computer Science Department
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Vincent Lefevre wrote:
>> Now we could quote with -F only if these chars are at the end,
>> though I'm not sure that complexity is warranted.
> In any case, this form of quoting incorrect with -b, as \= is invalid
> in ISO C.

That's right, we need another way to escape classifier characters with -bF, 
since the current method is clearly wrong.

Let's use ""= instead, as it's valid ISO C. In other words, where we currently 
do this:

$ python -c "import socket as s; sock = s.socket(s.AF_UNIX); sock.bind('b')"
$ touch b= b=x
$ ls -bF
b=  b\=  b\=x

the last command should output this instead:

b=  b""=  b=x

This works because in ISO C "b""=" is equivalent to "b=". We should do this only 
with characters at the end, because it's not needed elsewhere and the "" is 
annoying.




Information forwarded to bug-coreutils@HIDDEN:
bug#33113; Package coreutils. Full text available.

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From: Vincent Lefevre <vincent@HIDDEN>
To: =?iso-8859-1?Q?P=E1draig?= Brady <P@HIDDEN>
Subject: Re: bug#33113: incorrect and inconsistent quoting in ls output
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On 2018-10-27 07:28:26 -0700, Pádraig Brady wrote:
> On 23/10/18 17:54, Paul Eggert wrote:
> > On 10/22/18 1:44 AM, Vincent Lefevre wrote:
> >> On the behavior, there's still the issue concerning = and &.
> > 
> > Yes, you're right, there's no need to quote = with -b.
> 
> The reason \= is quoted with -bF is to distinguish socket
> names that end in =. An edge case indeed, though the issue
> is not particular to '=', but all of the classifier chars.
> 
> Now we could quote with -F only if these chars are at the end,
> though I'm not sure that complexity is warranted.

In any case, this form of quoting incorrect with -b, as \= is invalid
in ISO C.

-- 
Vincent Lefèvre <vincent@HIDDEN> - Web: <https://www.vinc17.net/>
100% accessible validated (X)HTML - Blog: <https://www.vinc17.net/blog/>
Work: CR INRIA - computer arithmetic / AriC project (LIP, ENS-Lyon)




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Subject: Re: bug#33113: incorrect and inconsistent quoting in ls output
To: Paul Eggert <eggert@HIDDEN>, Vincent Lefevre <vincent@HIDDEN>
References: <20181021233440.GC25339@HIDDEN>
 <41e01873-ad78-3f76-7a8f-a036bb5fa733@HIDDEN>
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On 23/10/18 17:54, Paul Eggert wrote:
> On 10/22/18 1:44 AM, Vincent Lefevre wrote:
>> On the behavior, there's still the issue concerning = and &.
> 
> Yes, you're right, there's no need to quote = with -b.

The reason \= is quoted with -bF is to distinguish socket
names that end in =. An edge case indeed, though the issue
is not particular to '=', but all of the classifier chars.

Now we could quote with -F only if these chars are at the end,
though I'm not sure that complexity is warranted.

cheers,
Pádraig




Information forwarded to bug-coreutils@HIDDEN:
bug#33113; Package coreutils. Full text available.

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Subject: Re: bug#33113: incorrect and inconsistent quoting in ls output
To: Vincent Lefevre <vincent@HIDDEN>
References: <20181021233440.GC25339@HIDDEN>
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From: Paul Eggert <eggert@HIDDEN>
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On 10/22/18 1:44 AM, Vincent Lefevre wrote:
> On the behavior, there's still the issue concerning = and &.

Yes, you're right, there's no need to quote = with -b.





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bug#33113; Package coreutils. Full text available.

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Date: Mon, 22 Oct 2018 10:44:57 +0200
From: Vincent Lefevre <vincent@HIDDEN>
To: Paul Eggert <eggert@HIDDEN>
Subject: Re: bug#33113: incorrect and inconsistent quoting in ls output
Message-ID: <20181022084457.GE25339@HIDDEN>
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On 2018-10-22 01:21:40 -0700, Paul Eggert wrote:
> Vincent Lefevre wrote:
> > I get the following with ls (GNU coreutils) 8.30.
> > 
> > zira% touch a=b a=b\&c
> > zira% ls a=b*
> > 'a=b'  'a=b&c'
> > zira% ls -b a=b*
> > a=b  a=b&c
> > zira% ls -F a=b*
> > 'a=b'  'a=b&c'
> > zira% ls -bF a=b*
> > a\=b  a\=b&c
> > 
> > AFAIK, the = character is not a shell metacharacter (except with zsh
> > but only in the first position), thus does not need to be quoted.

Actually it seems that the meaning of "metacharacter" is ambiguous.
In bash, & is regarded as a metacharacter:

  metacharacter
      A  character that, when unquoted, separates words.  One of the
      following:
      |  & ; ( ) < > space tab newline

> '=' is a shell metacharacter after 'set -k' in Bash.

It's a special character, but not a metacharacter (see above).
But then I agree on the need for quoting, if particular shells
are taking into account.

> > Moreover, while & is not a metacharacter, it is a special character
> > that should be quoted for practical reasons.
> 
> As far as I can see '&' is being quoted correctly in the above examples.

Not with "ls -bF": the quoting in a\=b&c is inconsistent.
Just like =, & should be quoted. Or = shouldn't be quoted
(see below).

> -b means to quote for C strings, not for the shell.

Hmm, yes... The issue here is that -b was actually changing the
quoting style, hence my confusion on this point. That's a bug in
the ls man page, which does not say so:

       -b, --escape
              print C-style escapes for nongraphic characters

The info manual is OK:

‘-b’
‘--escape’
‘--quoting-style=escape’
     Quote nongraphic characters in file names using alphabetic and
     octal backslash sequences like those used in C.

> If you want to quote for the shell, try
> --quoting-style='shell-escape'.

That's already the default. Actually, the confusion comes from the
ls man page.

On the behavior, there's still the issue concerning = and &.

-- 
Vincent Lefèvre <vincent@HIDDEN> - Web: <https://www.vinc17.net/>
100% accessible validated (X)HTML - Blog: <https://www.vinc17.net/blog/>
Work: CR INRIA - computer arithmetic / AriC project (LIP, ENS-Lyon)




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Subject: Re: bug#33113: incorrect and inconsistent quoting in ls output
To: Vincent Lefevre <vincent@HIDDEN>
References: <20181021233440.GC25339@HIDDEN>
From: Paul Eggert <eggert@HIDDEN>
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Vincent Lefevre wrote:
> I get the following with ls (GNU coreutils) 8.30.
> 
> zira% touch a=b a=b\&c
> zira% ls a=b*
> 'a=b'  'a=b&c'
> zira% ls -b a=b*
> a=b  a=b&c
> zira% ls -F a=b*
> 'a=b'  'a=b&c'
> zira% ls -bF a=b*
> a\=b  a\=b&c
> 
> AFAIK, the = character is not a shell metacharacter (except with zsh
> but only in the first position), thus does not need to be quoted.

'=' is a shell metacharacter after 'set -k' in Bash.

> Moreover, while & is not a metacharacter, it is a special character
> that should be quoted for practical reasons.

As far as I can see '&' is being quoted correctly in the above examples. -b 
means to quote for C strings, not for the shell. If you want to quote for the 
shell, try --quoting-style='shell-escape'.




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I get the following with ls (GNU coreutils) 8.30.

zira% touch a=3Db a=3Db\&c
zira% ls a=3Db*
'a=3Db'  'a=3Db&c'
zira% ls -b a=3Db*
a=3Db  a=3Db&c
zira% ls -F a=3Db*
'a=3Db'  'a=3Db&c'
zira% ls -bF a=3Db*
a\=3Db  a\=3Db&c

AFAIK, the =3D character is not a shell metacharacter (except with zsh
but only in the first position), thus does not need to be quoted.

Moreover, while & is not a metacharacter, it is a special character
that should be quoted for practical reasons.

In particular, this inconsistency with -bF makes a\=3Db&c unusable by
copy-paste, as a\=3Db&c can't be used directly in a shell command, and
'a\=3Db&c' is not OK either.

Note: Such filenames with =3D and & can be produced by "wget -r".

--=20
Vincent Lef=E8vre <vincent@HIDDEN> - Web: <https://www.vinc17.net/>
100% accessible validated (X)HTML - Blog: <https://www.vinc17.net/blog/>
Work: CR INRIA - computer arithmetic / AriC project (LIP, ENS-Lyon)




Acknowledgement sent to Vincent Lefevre <vincent@HIDDEN>:
New bug report received and forwarded. Copy sent to bug-coreutils@HIDDEN. Full text available.
Report forwarded to bug-coreutils@HIDDEN:
bug#33113; Package coreutils. Full text available.
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