Friday, November 12, 2010

No KSH Love

I've been using UNIX operating systems (and workalikes) for a long time, now. The first UNIX system I touched was in 1989. As a longtime user of UNIX, I've developed some deeply set habits and preferences.

One such preference is my choice login-shell. I am a Korn Shell (KSH) user. Unfortunately, it's not super well-supported under Linux. It's made available more as a concession to dinosaurs, such as myself, than as a real "we think this is a good shell" type of effort. While each of the other myriad shells in Linux seem to come with a default shell initialization script in /etc/skel, KSH is given no such file.

All I can guess is that the distribution/package maintainers figure, "if this person's using KSH, they have enough clue to know how to put together a proper shell init file - no sense bothering to provide one." Worse, so few of today's UNIX "administrators" seem to get that there's shells other than BASH, that they don't bother to alter the contents of /etc/skel (or, if they do, they only do it for BASH and maybe CSH). Then again, there's a reason I put quotation marks around "administrators".

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