Bug#1033311: sysvinit-utils: pidof not always returning a pid when using the full path to a program

The Wanderer wanderer at fastmail.fm
Wed Mar 29 03:28:09 BST 2023

(Replying to the list, not the bug, because IIRC in the past when I've
replied to a bug from bugmail received on-list it's resulted in my no
longer receiving the list copy of mail sent to that bug. This does tend
to result in my refraining from joining in discussion even when I
otherwise might.)

On 2023-03-28 at 12:06, Thorsten Glaser wrote:

> On Tue, 28 Mar 2023, Jesse Smith wrote:
>>pidof isn't going to chase down multiple layers of symbolic links. If
> I consider that a (not release-critical) bug that should be
> addressed by a Debian-local patch if upstream is hostile.

While I would reflexively tend to agree (what is the downside to having
pidof do that?), I'm not sure that it wouldn't introduce potential bug
cases of its own; for example, is there any possibility of this leading
to indefinitely following a symlink cycle that loops back on itself? If
so, is there any reasonable way of breaking such a cycle, without
unreasonably increasing the overhead of following the chain in the more
normal case?

Any such patch should probably be carefully considered to make sure it
doesn't introduce a problem as bad as or worse than the one being fixed.

   The Wanderer

The reasonable man adapts himself to the world; the unreasonable one
persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all
progress depends on the unreasonable man.         -- George Bernard Shaw

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