Could ARG_MAX be increased?

Garance A Drosihn drosih at
Thu Sep 23 11:28:06 PDT 2004

At 4:54 PM +0300 9/23/04, Putinas Piliponis wrote:
>>how about grep -r ou find | xargs grep !
>but this is workaround - isn't it ?

No, that is the solution which will work for any number of files,
on any Unix-based system.  No matter what we increase MAX_ARGS to,
it still be possible that some users will have a good reason to
need to process even more args.

The `find' command takes a little time to get comfortable with,
but it is a very useful utility program for some situations.  I
have hit the limits in Solaris, for instance, and one of the
earlier messages claimed that Sun uses a value of 1meg for MAX_ARGS.

I have nothing against the idea of increasing the value of MAX_ARGS,
as long as people realize that increasing it will not solve the issue
for all situations.

Garance Alistair Drosehn            =   gad at
Senior Systems Programmer           or  gad at
Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute    or  drosih at

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