Problems with command line scratch files in zsh

Mike Meyer mwm at
Sun Jun 12 08:31:03 GMT 2005

Since going to 5.x with devfd, I've noticed that some of the shell
constructs used by zsh (and other shells - I know zsh didn't invent
this) quit working. To wit:

guru% wc <(cat /etc/motd)
wc: /dev/fd/11: open: No such file or directory

The <(...) construct runs the pipe in (), and replaces the <(...) with
the name of the /dev/fd/ entry for the output of that pipe. The file
exists for the shell process doing all this. But when the comm process
tries to open the file to read the data, the file doesn't exist. This
is pretty nasty.

Anyone got any suggestions on how to fix this? A bug report with a
patch, maybe (I couldn't find any such bug report)? Workarounds? Maybe
this should go to hackers at

Mike Meyer <mwm at>
Independent Network/Unix/Perforce consultant, email for more information.

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