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People have been wondering "what would Linus have said?" I'm pretty sure he wouldn't have broken the existing (undocumented) behavior in the first place "because it breaks applications and the one and only reason for kernel is to allow applications to run". But then again, PHP is not a kernel. :)



I think you are entirely right. As Linux says "Kernel exists for its users". Pretty similarly, a platform (php/zend) exists for its applications.

Linus has always been pretty adamant about not breaking API behaviour even undocumented ones. But in this case, undefined behaviour had been previously documented.

Also, was it him or Ulrich Drepper who were against changing memcpy undocumented behaviour. (mempcy used to work with overlapping regions too.)

PS. This mailing thread is from 2010. It's really old.


Ulrich Drepper was vigorously in favour of it. If your application breaks, it's because it was written wrong.


Exactly. The only reason this bug got to production, is because the function accepted an empty string parameter in the first place.


Yes, eg: https://lwn.net/Articles/494993/

Linus took extra steps to no break autofs behavior, even though it was (more) due to a bug in GCC than anything else.




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