setproctitle() and /usr/ucb/ps

Russ Allbery rra at
Sat Dec 24 04:15:35 UTC 2005

Miroslaw Luc <mirecki at> writes:
> On Fri, 9 Dec 2005, Russ Allbery wrote:

>> to support a weird and semi-broken feature when using the obsolete
>> version of ps on Solaris?

> Weird and semi-broken...? It's a BSD/SunOS compatibility tool:)

/usr/ucb is not really supported by Solaris; it's there for SunOS
compatibility only and basically will never change.  Many of the tools
there are badly broken and should never be used.  Putting it anywhere
other than last in your path generally causes all sorts of odd problems.
We don't even install it on our Solaris systems.

The main problem that I have with your patch is that it's directly invalid
ISO C.  You're doing things with pointers that are explicitly disallowed
by the standard (plus, the three-argument version of main() isn't
allowed in ISO C).  There is some code in INN that doesn't follow ISO C
rules for various reasons, but I try to keep it to a minimum and remove
that code wherever I can, and I'm not particularly excited about
introducing more (that even runs all the time on other platforms) just to
make /usr/ucb/ps work on Solaris.

Doing a Google search, it looks like most people are either copying the
incredibly grotty code from sendmail or just bailing on Solaris.  Your
code is cleaner, but still, I have a strong ew reaction.

Russ Allbery (rra at             <>

    Please send questions to the list rather than mailing me directly.
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