`CYGWIN=winsymlinks:nativestrict`, `ln -s target link` fails if target doesn't exist

Andrey Repin anrdaemon@yandex.ru
Thu Apr 28 23:48:00 GMT 2016

Greetings, Gene Pavlovsky!

> I have an issue to report:

> Introduction: On a UNIX system, `ln -s target link` creates a link
> regardless of target's existence.
> This is used in some scripts, e.g. Gentoo's `run-crons` (which I also
> use on Cygwin) uses a symlink pointing to the running process PID as
> lockfile.
> Issue: if `CYGWIN=winsymlinks:nativestrict` env var is set, running
> `ln -s target link` completely fails (even though running `mklink link
> target` in `cmd.exe` succeeds, same as `ln -s` does on UNIX). If
> `CYGWIN=winsymlinks:native`, a non-native link is created.

> So, `nativestrict` might break some (admittedly unorthodox) scripts.
> With `native` these script work, but still a native link would be
> preferrable and it is possible to create, but a non-native link is
> created instead.

> Bottom line, I think the native symlink creation code should be
> checked and a possibility should be added to create links to
> non-existent targets, rather than the current behavior of failing.

This is actually an arguable behavior, even in Linux. I can imagine the
behavior is "undefined" in such a case.
But I'll leave final say to the more experienced members of the list.

With best regards,
Andrey Repin
Friday, April 29, 2016 01:55:21

Sorry for my terrible english...

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