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Re: Possible bug

From: Alfred M. Szmidt
Subject: Re: Possible bug
Date: Wed, 21 May 2003 12:22:17 +0200

   I have a directory with 19997 files with extension .pos. I tried to
   erase them by writing in the command line:
   address@hidden 20news-19997.pos]$ rm -f *.pos
   bash: /bin/rm: Argument list too long

This is not a bug in rm, but a bug in your kernel.  From

Argument list too long

   I tried to move about 5000 files with mv, but it said:
       bash: /bin/mv: Argument list too long

   The UNIX operating system traditionally has a fixed limit for the
   amount of memory that can be used for a program environment and
   argument list combined. You can use getconf to return that limit. On
   my Linux system (2.2.12) that amount is 128k. On my HP-UX system
   (11.0) that amount is 2M. It can vary per operating system. POSIX only
   requires 20k which was the traditional value used for probably 20
   years. Newer operating systems releases usually increase that
       getconf ARG_MAX


   Here is an example using chmod where exceeding ARG_MAX argument length
   is avoided.
       find htdocs -name '*.html' -print0 | xargs -0 chmod a+r

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