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Re: tab completion with variable expansion broken

From: William F Hammond
Subject: Re: tab completion with variable expansion broken
Date: Mon, 15 Oct 2012 11:26:00 -0400
User-agent: Gnus/5.11 (Gnus v5.11) Emacs/22.2 (gnu/linux)

Chet --

Many thanks for your reply.

You write:

> On 10/14/12 8:52 AM, William F Hammond wrote:
>> Configuration Information [Automatically generated, do not change]:
>> Machine: i686
>> OS: linux-gnu
>> Compiler: gcc
>> Compilation CFLAGS:  -DPROGRAM='bash' -DCONF_HOSTTYPE='i686' 
>> -DCONF_OSTYPE='linux-gnu' -DCONF_MACHTYPE='i686-pc-linux-gnu' 
>> -DCONF_VENDOR='pc' -DLOCALEDIR='/usr/local/src/gnu/share/locale' 
>> -DPACKAGE='bash' -DSHELL -DHAVE_CONFIG_H   -I.  -I. -I./include -I./lib   -g 
>> -O2
>> uname output: Linux jeanubu 3.2.0-32-generic #51-Ubuntu SMP Wed Sep 26 
>> 21:32:50 UTC 2012 i686 athlon i386 GNU/Linux
>> Machine Type: i686-pc-linux-gnu
>> Bash Version: 4.2
>> Patch Level: 37
>> Release Status: release
>> Description:
>>      If I have ul=/usr/local in the environment, I may want to
>>      use a reference to it together with tab completion to go to
>>      the directory /usr/local/share/emacs/site-lisp.
> If you indeed are using bash-4.2.37, you can enable variable expansion
> by running `shopt -s direxpand'.  This will produce the behavior you
> want.
> I'm wondering if you've got programmable completion enabled, or whether
> you're running a different version of bash than bashbug indicates, because
> stock 4.2.37 doesn't quote the dollar sign.

Yes 'shopt -s direxpand' works.  Thanks.

I'm working with Ubuntu 12.04(LTS) which was installed by a
difficult upgrade from Ubuntu 10.04(LTS) about six weeks
ago.  Ubuntu 12.04 comes with bash version 4.2.24, while
10.04 came with 4.1.5.  So the tab completion issue was new
for me with bash 4.2.24.

Over the weekend I built bash 4.2.37 from source with
prefix /usr/local/src/gnu and placed a symlink to the
new executable in /usr/local/bin.

The Ubuntu package bash-completion for programmable completion
is installed, and also was installed with Ubuntu 10.04.  In both
cases the script /etc/bash.bashrc invokes programmable completion
though I have not descended into the details of this.

I have not studied enough to understand why this change
arose nor why 'shopt -s direxpand' should not be present in
/etc/bash.bashrc (though perhaps you now think it should).
(I don't see it in any of the files in

Thanks for your help and for your work on bash.

                              -- Bill

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