misc/96191: "cat" can display directory contents

Bjoern Voigt bjoern at cs.tu-berlin.de
Sun Apr 23 09:00:33 UTC 2006

>Number:         96191
>Category:       misc
>Synopsis:       "cat" can display directory contents
>Confidential:   no
>Severity:       non-critical
>Priority:       medium
>Responsible:    freebsd-bugs
>State:          open
>Class:          sw-bug
>Submitter-Id:   current-users
>Arrival-Date:   Sun Apr 23 09:00:29 GMT 2006
>Originator:     Bjoern Voigt
>Release:        6.1-PRERELEASE
FreeBSD my.host.name 6.1-PRERELEASE FreeBSD 6.1-PRERELEASE #0: Mon Mar 27 18:26:36 CEST 2006     root at chemnitz.dialup.cs.tu-berlin.de:/usr/src/sys/GENERIC.my  i386

The FreeBSD's version of "cat" is able to display directory contains:

$ cat /etc

Solaris (tested with SunOS 5.9) shows the same behavior.

The behavior on directories in not described in the manual page. 

$ cat /etc
"cat" from "coreutils" (GNU Linux) refuses to display directory contents.

$ cat /etc
cat: /etc: Is a directory


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