Showing posts from September, 2014

Modernizing "less"

I have just spent an all-nighter doing something I didn't expect to do. I've " modernized " less (1).  (That link is to the changeset.) First off, let me explain the motivation.  We need a pager for illumos that can meet the requirements for POSIX IEEE 2003.1-2008 more (1).  We have a suitable pager (barely), in closed source form only, delivered into /usr/xpg4/bin/more .  We have an open source /usr/bin/more , but it is incredibly limited, hearkening back to the days of printed hard copy I think.  (It even has Microsoft copyrights in it!) So closed source is kind of a no go for me. less (1) looks attractive.  It's widely used, and has been used to fill in for more(1) to achieve POSIX compliance on other systems (such as MacOS X.) So I started by unpacking it into our tree, and trying to get it to work with an illumos build system. That's when I discovered the crazy contortions autoconf was doing that basically wound up leaving it with just legacy