Dangers of using a non-base shell

Roland Smith rsmith at xs4all.nl
Tue Oct 30 10:06:27 PDT 2007

On Mon, Oct 29, 2007 at 08:50:40PM +0000, Stephen Allen wrote:
> It's been drawn to my attention not to use bash from the ports collection, 
> because if one of it's dependencies (gettext or libiconv) fails or is 
> updated significantly, it could break, and prevent login. The suggested 
> solution was to use a base shell (such as sh) and append 'bash -l' to .shrc 
> to automatically enter bash.

This is only a problem for root. If you want to use bash as root you
should compile it statically. See below.

> Would it be a better idea to use the pre-compiled binary for bash?  And if 
> I did so, could I be alerted to updates as easy as using 'pkg_version -v' 
> when checking if any ports need updating?

You can define WITH_STATIC_BASH when you're building bash, so the binary
is self-contained.

But if you're starting in single user mode, only / will be mounted. So
if you have /usr or /usr/local on a separate partition, you'd be screwed.

That is why root should only use a shell that's in the / partition.

R.F.Smith                                   http://www.xs4all.nl/~rsmith/
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