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Today's piece of Unix history

2012-01-22 by bsiegert@

Courtesy of Rob Pike on Google+ and Richard Kettlewell in the comments:

In Plan 9 and Research Unix, rm(1) also removes empty directories. Why doesn't it in Unix? In V7 Unix, only privileged users could unlink() a directory. Thus, rmdir(1) was a setuid executable. rm(1) actually called rmdir(1) via fork()+exec() in its recursive mode. Of course, there were some bugs in rmdir ...

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