open(1) removed from Debian? (was: 'open' instead of 'xdg-open' for usability?)

Ma Xiaojun damage3025 at
Sat Dec 21 20:43:07 PST 2013

On Sun, Dec 22, 2013 at 4:23 AM, Matthias Klumpp <mak at> wrote:
> Btw, I don't find "I like open better" a good justification for
> dropping it from kbd - you are asking essentially for an API break
> which has unforseen consequences if we just swap some binary names on
> shell, especially with shell-scripts which are not included in Debian.

Given giant API breakage like making sh Dash instead of Bash or
probably a init system change someday. I fail to see any reason to cry
about this tiny little API change.

> Standard is irrelevant here, as it is "just" a binary name, and
> popularity is something to argue about.

It is "just" a symbol link that exists for no merits.
Have you read the open(1) ?
Does it encourage people to use "open" at all?
The history in the context of 1996 isn't boring, Ah?

> I am not the kbd maintainer, so it's up to them to decide a rename (or
> more precide, it's upstream's decision). I like "open" for files more
> too, but unless kbd is the only user of that command, renaming it will
> cause problems.

It seems that kdb upstream is not claiming open(1); it's a Debian "extension".

xdg doesn't have to claim open(1) overnight either. It's just that the
current usage of open(1) is a waste of namespace.

More information about the xdg mailing list