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Re: Segfault after many stackframes

From: Ole Tange
Subject: Re: Segfault after many stackframes
Date: Sat, 4 May 2019 13:56:20 +0200

On Fri, Apr 19, 2019 at 3:16 PM Chet Ramey <address@hidden> wrote:
> On 4/19/19 4:21 AM, Ole Tange wrote:
> > Reading https://www.gnu.org/prep/standards/standards.html#Semantics
> >
> > """Avoid arbitrary limits on the length or number of any data
> > structure, including file names, lines, files, and symbols, by
> > allocating all data structures dynamically."""
> >
> > You could argue that Bash being a GNU tool, it should do like Perl:
> > Run out of memory before failing.
> You've obviously overlooked the FUNCNEST variable and its effects,

I tried with FUNCNEST:

$ FUNCNEST=100000000
$ re() { t=$((t+1)); if [[ $t -gt 8000000 ]]; then echo foo; return;
fi; re; }; re
Warning: Program '/bin/bash' crashed.

So even by setting FUNCNEST it still crashes.

The man page 4.4.19(1) says:

"By default, no limit is imposed on the number of recursive calls."

which I cannot see as being correct. It may not be limited by
FUNCNEST, but it is clearly limited.

> I am curious about this point. Why do you think bash would exceed some
> kind of memory resource limit before it exceeds a stack size limit?

I expect bash to behave similar to other interpreted languages by
either telling me that I have reached the limit of recursion (like
Zsh/Ksh) or by running out of memory (like Perl). I expect this to
happen without setting FUNCNEST.

I do not expect bash to segfault ever, and I cannot remember ever
seeing a program that segfaulted by design. All the segfaults I have
experienced were due to bugs in the program.

I imagine the segfault happens because we have a pointer outside the
stack size limit. Maybe just give an error and exit ("out of stack
space" or similar - preferably also telling me how to raise this limit
in case this was not an mistake), whenever such a pointer is
encountered instead of segfaulting? Had I seen that, I would not have
assumed it was a bug.


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