[Updated]: readline & libreadline5

Nicholas Wourms nwourms@netscape.net
Sat Jul 27 13:02:00 GMT 2002

With the new release of bash, we have a new release of 
readline.  Now at version 4.3, the changes to readline are 
as follows:

a.  Fixed output of comment-begin character when listing
     variable values.

b.  Added some default key bindings for common escape
     sequences produced by HOME and END keys.

c.  Fixed the mark handling code to be more

d.  A bug was fixed in the code that prints possible
     completions to keep it from printing empty strings in
     certain circumstances.

e.  Change the key sequence printing code to print ESC as
     M\- if ESC is a meta-prefix character -- it's easier for
     users to understand than \e.

f.  Fixed unstifle_history() to return values that match the

g.  Fixed the event loop (rl_event_hook) to handle the case
     where the input file descriptor is invalidated.

h.  Fixed the prompt display code to work better when the
     application has a custom redisplay function.

i.  Changes to make reading and writing the history file a
     little faster, and to cope with huge history files
     without calling abort(3) from xmalloc.

j.  The vi-mode `S' and `s' commands are now undone

k.  Fixed a problem which caused the display to be messed up
     when the last line of a multi-line prompt (possibly
     containing invisible characters) was longer than the
     screen width.

The new features are as follows:

a.  Support for key `subsequences':  allows, e.g., ESC and
     ESC-a to both be bound to readline functions.  Now the
     arrow keys may be used in vi insert mode.

b.  When listing completions, and the number of lines
     displayed is more than the screen length, readline uses
     an internal pager to display the results.  This is
     controlled by the `page-completions' variable (default

c.  New code to handle editing and displaying multibyte

d.  The behavior introduced in bash-2.05a of deciding
     whether or not to append a slash to a completed name
     that is a symlink to a directory has been made optional,
     controlled by the `mark-symlinked-directories' variable
     (default is the 2.05a behavior).

e.  The `insert-comment' command now acts as a toggle if
     given a numeric argument:  if the first characters on
     the line don't specify a comment, insert one; if they
     do, delete the comment text.

f.  New application-settable completion variable:
     rl_completion_mark_symlink_dirs, allows an application's
     completion function to temporarily override the user's
     preference for appending slashes to names which are
     symlinks to directories.

g.  New function available to application completion
     rl_completion_mode, to tell how the completion function
     was invoked and decide which argument to supply to
     rl_complete_internal (to list completions, etc.).

h.  Readline now has an overwrite mode, toggled by the
     `overwrite-mode' bindable command, which could be bound
     to `Insert'.

i.  New application-settable completion variable:
     rl_completion_suppress_append, inhibits appending of
     rl_completion_append_character to completed words.

j.  New key bindings when reading an incremental search
     string:  ^W yanks the currently-matched word out of the
     current line into the search string; ^Y yanks the rest
     of the current line into the search string, DEL or ^H
     deletes characters from the search string.

The test flag was removed a few days ago and the should be 
available for download immediately.

I have monitored the bash/readline mailing lists, and have 
seen no issues to be concerned about.  This package has been 
tested, and seems to be in good working order.  Before you 
ask, Chuck is still the maintainer, I've just step in to 
help him while he is away.  *DO NOT*, I REPEAT, *DO NOT* 
E-MAIL him with your questions/bugs/etc.  The preferred 
place for such discussion is cygwin@cygwin.com.



To update your installation, click on the "Install Cygwin 
now" link on the http://cygwin.com/ web page.  This 
downloads setup.exe to your system.  Then, run setup and 
update the readline package -- and also install the 
libreadline5 package.

Note that we have recently stopped downloads from 
sources.redhat.com (aka cygwin.com) due to bandwidth 
limitations.  This means that you will  need to find a 
mirror which has this update.

In the US,
is a reliable high bandwidth connection.

In the UK,
is usually up-to-date within 48 hours.

If one of the above doesn't have the latest version of this 
package then you can either wait for the site to be updated 
or find another mirror.

If you have questions or comments, please send them to the 
Cygwin mailing list at: cygwin@cygwin.com .  I would 
appreciate if you would use this mailing list rather than 
emailing me directly.  This includes ideas and comments 
about the setup utility or Cygwin in general.

If you want to make a point or ask a question, the Cygwin 
mailing list is the appropriate place.


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