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From: Stewart, Robert (stewart_at_[hidden])
Date: 2002-03-28 08:41:33

From: Ross Smith [mailto:r-smith_at_[hidden]]
> Dylan Nicholson wrote:
> >
> > --- Ross Smith <r-smith_at_[hidden]> wrote: > Dylan Nicholson wrote:
> > > >
> > > > >
> > > > access(filename, W_OK) == W_OK?
> > >
> > But it is the only recognised way under POSIX of
> determining whether a file is
> > writable.
> But it _doesn't_ determine that.
> The essential point I'm trying to make is that a test that can't be
> trusted is useless. Unless we can have an is_readonly() test that's
> _guaranteed_ to always give the right answer, there's no
> point in having
> it at all.
> If is_readonly() doesn't actually tell you whether the file is
> read-only, what possible use could it be?

The purpose of this library is to enable scripting. Therefore, one must
ask, "What does a script do to test for write-ability?" Answer: "test -w
pathname" or its equivalent in the various shells. Who's got access to
implementations of test or shells that do it themselves? What does "test
-w" -- or whatever syntax your favorite shell uses -- do? (ksh, for
example, provides syntactic sugar for test, but ultimately calls test. I'm
guessing that there are shells that do the test themselves rather than
running test.)

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