bin/149424: fstab and labels with whitespace

Oliver Fromme olli at
Tue Aug 17 13:30:04 UTC 2010

The following reply was made to PR conf/149424; it has been noted by GNATS.

From: Oliver Fromme <olli at>
To: walter at
Cc: freebsd-bugs at FreeBSD.ORG, bug-followup at FreeBSD.ORG
Subject: Re: bin/149424: fstab and labels with whitespace
Date: Tue, 17 Aug 2010 15:27:31 +0200 (CEST)

 Walter C. Pelissero wrote:
  > Oliver Fromme writes:
  > > The problem with this patch is that it breaks backwards-
  > > compatibility.  Some people might already use backslashes
  > As far as I remember, the patch I proposed allowed a double backslash
  > ('\\') to mean a single backslash ('\').
 Sure, but still everyone who uses backslashes will have to
 change his /etc/fstab *in advance*, or otherwise his box
 will not boot after the update.  Changing the syntax of
 /etc/fstab is a very delicate issue.
 Of course, it would be possible to change the syntax in a
 backwards-compatible way.  But this would require more code
 and would potentially introduce more complications.
  > > in /etc/fstab, for whatever reason.  This change would
  > > make them rather unhappy, I'm afraid.
  > Being unhappy for having to change a couple of entries in fstab is not
  > nearly as bad as not being able to insert an entry altogether.
 As I wrote, there are several workarounds.
  > > One way to circumvent the problem would be to use glabel(8)
  > Yes, or mlabel(1).  Although reformatting (and, thus, relabelling) is
  > common on devices such as digital camera; it saves time compared to
  > deleting everything.
 Well ...  I always format my camera's memory card under
 FreeBSD after I have downloaded all images from it (which
 requires connecting to the FreeBSD machine anyway).
 I cannot format the card with the camera anyway because
 that wouldn't work with my CHDK firmware.  :)
 Best regards
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