Suggestion: rename "killall" to "fkill", but wait five years to phase the new name in

Jason A. Spiro jasonspiro4 at
Tue Dec 22 23:58:01 UTC 2009

On Tue, Dec 22, 2009 at 6:44 PM, Doug Barton <dougb at> wrote:

> Seriously, it's not our problem if solaris did something stupid.

Actually, it looks like the mistake was made by Linux and FreeBSD
developers.  SunOS had[1] killall in 1992, and maybe earlier.  Craig
said the earliest copyright date on Linux killall is 1994.  I think
FreeBSD killall is newer than 1994, since its manpage says that it was
modeled after the killall included with other OSes.  I think this must
mean Linux.

When Linux and FreeBSD made their kill-selected-processes command,
they shouldn't've called it killALL.

But mistakes happen.  Luckily, mistakes can be corrected.

> There
> is no hope whatsoever that you're going to get every Unix that has a
> rational 'killall' command to change, so can we please drop this thread?

It's never too late to change something for the better.  Xorg finally
set Ctrl+Alt+Backspace to be disabled by default about a year ago, to
prevent accidental data loss by newbies.  Some people agree with this,
some people disagree, but the change is done.  So it would have been
better to write "There is little hope, so can we please drop this
thread?" instead.

^  [1].

More information about the freebsd-hackers mailing list