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To: gentoo-dev@g.o
From: Christoph Junghans <ottxor@g.o>
Subject: RFC: Virtual for awk implementation
Date: Tue, 29 May 2012 17:11:17 -0700
Hi,

recently I stumbled across a problem with mawk, which is apprearly
Ubuntu's default awk interpreter.
This brought the idea to my mind of adding a virtual for awk. Beside
the fact that we already have 3 awk interpreters in gx86 (gawk, mawk
and busybox awk), there are other ones like nawk and awka.

I had some discussions with spanKY on that topic in bug #415689, which
summarizes in the following:

Advantages:
- mawk is faster - useful for scientific purposes
- busybox awk could replace gawk on minimal systems
- more POSIX conform systems

Disadvantages:
- some awk code in the tree and portage is probably using GNU
extensions without executing gawk explicitly
- gray zone of Posix 1003.2  (e.g. substr() function and an index of 0)

What we would need:
- virtual/awk
- app-admin/eselect-awk (version available in cj-overlay)
and
- testing and migration of existing packages using gawk
<http://qa-reports.gentoo.org/output/genrdeps/rindex/sys-apps/gawk>
and
<http://qa-reports.gentoo.org/output/genrdeps/dindex/sys-apps/gawk>
to name a few.

I have tested mawk as default interpreter for a while on my x86 boxes
and didn't observed any problems so far.

Cheers,

Christoph

-- 
Christoph Junghans
http://dev.gentoo.org/~ottxor/


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Updated Jun 29, 2012

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