[Bash-completion-devel] [Bash-completion-commits] [SCM] bash-completion branch, master, updated. cbf7e1f96387bdccdc965e5ed49de58b7dfceeef

Todd Zullinger tmz at pobox.com
Thu Dec 10 20:55:29 UTC 2009

Freddy Vulto wrote:
> On 091209 22:25, Guillaume Rousse wrote:
>> Why doesn't remove the colon from COMP_WORDBREAKS works with bash
>> 3?
> COMP_WORDBREAKS is a bash-4 variable, see:
>    http://www.gnu.org/software/bash/manual/html_node/Bash-Variables.html
> Bash-3 always splits command line words using a fixed set of
> wordbreak-characters, I thinks it's: " \t\n\"'><=;|&(:", and it
> can't be modified...

Sure it can.  The same text from the bash manual link above is present
in the bash-3.2 documentation.  I don't know how far back it goes,
though it's not mentioned in the one bash-2.05b man page I have at

When the gvfs upstream installed a a config that globally dropped the
':' it caused much grief for other completions that relied on ':'
being in the default list¹.  It's not a huge deal if those other
completions are all made to check for ':' and add it if it is not
present, but the effort to do that should be weighed carefully against
the benefit of dropping it globally rather than fixing it for some
other completion.

¹ See https://bugzilla.redhat.com/show_bug.cgi?id=444466 and
http://repo.or.cz/w/git.git?a=commitdiff;h=db8a9ff for two examples of
the fallout from gvfs dropping ':' from COMP_WORDBREAKS (in bash-3

Todd        OpenPGP -> KeyID: 0xBEAF0CE3 | URL: www.pobox.com/~tmz/pgp
One of the symptoms of an approaching nervous breakdown is the belief
that one's work is terribly important.
    -- Bertrand Russell (1872-1970)

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