view www/news.html @ 931:011df43e35d5

Option type @ counts number of occurrences, it doesn't take an argument.
author Rob Landley <rob@landley.net>
date Sat, 22 Jun 2013 15:36:25 -0500
parents 56a20120a34f
children b4faf2ae39e8
line wrap: on
line source

<!--#include file="header.html" -->

<p><b>Toybox combines the most common Linux command line utilities together
into a single BSD-licensed executable that's simple, small, fast,
reasonably standards-compliant, and powerful enough to turn Android into
a development environment.</b> See the links on the left for details.</p>

<h2>News</h2>
<hr><b>March 21, 2013</b>
<p>Video of my ELC talk
"<a href=http://youtu.be/SGmtP5Lg_t0>Why is Toybox?</a>"
is up on youtube. Related materials include the
<a href=http://landley.net/talks/celf-2013.txt>talk outline</a> and an
<a href=/aboriginal/about.html#selfhost>android self-hosting writeup</a>.</p>

<p>[Updated June 4] The following links jump to specific topics in the video. (Sorry about
the ads, it's The Linux Foundation.)</p>

<ul>
<li>0m29s <a href=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SGmtP5Lg_t0#t=0m29s>The smartphone is replacing the PC</a></li>
  <ul>
  <li>4m22s <a href=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SGmtP5Lg_t0#t=4m22s>Software needed to become self-hosting</a></li>
  <li>6m20s <a href=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SGmtP5Lg_t0#t=6m20s>Do we care if android or iphone wins?</a></li>
  </ul>
<li>9m45s <a href=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SGmtP5Lg_t0#t=9m45s>Android not vanilla: oppose or accept?</a></li>
  <ul>
  <li>11m30s <a href=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SGmtP5Lg_t0#t=11m30s>Open source can't do User Interfaces</a></li>
  </ul>
<li>15m09s <a href=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SGmtP5Lg_t0#t=15m09s>Android is not copyleft: oppose or accept?</a></li>
<li>18m23s <a href=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SGmtP5Lg_t0#t=18m23s>Security issues</a></li>
<li>21m15s <a href=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SGmtP5Lg_t0#t=21m15s>Solutions to the software problems</a></li>
  <ul>
  <li>22m55s <a href=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SGmtP5Lg_t0#t=22m55s>What toybox needs to be/do</a></li>
  <li>28m17s <a href=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SGmtP5Lg_t0#t=28m17s>What is toybox?</a></li>
    <ul>
    <li>28m58s <a href=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SGmtP5Lg_t0#t=28m58s>Why toybox started...</a></li>
    <li>37m50s <a href=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SGmtP5Lg_t0#t=37m50s>What does toybox actually implement?</a></li>
    </ul>
  </ul>
</ul>
</span>


<hr><b>March 14, 2013</b>
<blockquote><p>"Ford, you're turning into a penguin. Stop it." -
The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.</p></blockquote>

<p><a href=downloads/toybox-0.4.4.tar.bz2>Toybox 0.4.4</a> is based on
<a href=http://landley.net/hg/toybox/shortlog/813>commit 813</a>, adding
the "time" and "readahead" commands, plus some bugfixes.</p>

<p>The "cp" command now implements the -s symlink option, plus bugfixes
getting various corner cases right as used in actual package builds.
"id -Gn root" should now print root's groups
instead of the current user's. Several build fixes so toybox builds under
Ubuntu 8.04 again (which is about as old a build environment as you
can expect to find posix-2008 features in).</p>

<p>Unfinished commands have generally been moved to "toys/pending".
Everything else should "default y" to participate in make defconfig.
Several of those pending commands got some basic cleanup so allyesconfig
should at least compile (although defconfig is still what's useful).</p>

<p>Significant roadmap updates, checking several other multicall binaries
(klibc, sash, sbase, s6...) to see what commands they include.</p>

<hr><b>January 18, 2013</b>
<blockquote><p>This must be Thursday. I never could get the hang of Thursdays. - The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.</p></blockquote>

<p><a href=downloads/toybox-0.4.3.tar.bz2>Toybox 0.4.3</a> is based on
<a href=http://landley.net/hg/toybox/shortlog/793>commit 793</a>. There
are now exactly 100 commands in defconfig (of a little over 220 on the
<a href=roadmap.html>todo list</a>).</p>

<p>Elie De Brauwer added the rev command, cleaned up tac, implemented the -s
and -f flags for seq, added -v and -i to killall (and fixed killall not to
kill itself before finishing its pid list), and added to the test suite.
Felix Janda added -m to mkdir, pwd -L and -P, and more test suite entries.</p>

<p>Rob Landley added the losetup command, and fixed the existing ls, cp, and
readlink commands. The segfault in ls
happened when it couldn't determine the screen size (last release changed the
default to -C and a screen size of 0 made column view unhappy), and cp got an
extensive rewrite bringing it up to date with the dirtree changes and fixing
a number of things it never did right in the first place. The xabspath()
code in the library now handles a symlink after ".." properly (and the test
suite checks for it).</p>

<p>Infrastructure-wise the code is better about automatically setting the
error return code properly. Now error_msg() sets the exit code to 1 if it's
still defaulting to 0, and the global exit path does a fflush(NULL) with error
bit check rather than trying to be quite so granular about flushing. (That
means if we use printf() instead of xprintf() it still exits with the right
error code, it just doesn't end the program early on an output error.)
Minor bugfix so TOYBOX_DEBUG
doesn't always warn about the lack of suid bit when toybox is built with
at least one STAYROOT command. Bugfix for the option [grouping] logic
(and then further fixes to the error reporting pointed out by Ashwini Sharma).
dirtree_handle_callback() now has a prefix like the rest of the dirtree
functions. A lot of stuff doing manual path handling was switched to using
libc basename() (including, embarassingly, the basename command), which means
it now correctly detects "/trailing/slash/" which the previous code didn't.</p>

<p>Also, last release included some accidentally checked in debug code that
disabled compiler optimization, so the binary size bloated a bit. It's back
to -Os by default now.</p>

<hr><b>December 15, 2012</b>
<blockquote><p>"The major difference between a thing that might go wrong and a
thing that cannot possibly go wrong is that when a thing that cannot possibly
go wrong goes wrong it usually turns out to be impossible to get at or repair."
</p><p>- The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.</p></blockquote>

<p><a href=downloads/toybox-0.4.2.tar.bz2>Toybox 0.4.2</a> is based on
<a href=http://landley.net/hg/toybox/shortlog/749>commit 749</a> and is
just a resync. Linux 3.7 came out, meaning it's time to do an Aboriginal
Linux release, and that should use a stable version of toybox. So here's
a new stable version.</p>

<p>The new commands are cut (from Jason Kyungwan Han), touch
(from Choubey Ji), expand (from Jonathan Clairembault, and he fixed a
bug in login), and rm (from Rob Landley). Felix Janda added UTF-8
support infrastructure (for non-ascii character sets) with a config option.
Elie De Brauwer added tests for cat and sha1sum, and -so options to pidof.
The "ls" command defaults to -C (column view) now, and "readlink" now supports
-fenq.</p>

<p>Portability work: toybox should now build against the musl C library,
and against older glibc versions (circa 2008, much before that and kernel
features we depend on start to drop out).</p>

<p>The whole codebase got reindented from "one tab" to "two spaces" per
level. The option parsing logic now understands [groups] of commands (when more
than one in a group is selected it can switch the others off, or error out,
or other things). The error_exit() infrastructure can now longjmp back to an
earlier point instead of exiting. Each toys/* directory now has a README,
the first line of which is the fancy name menuconfig uses for the directory
(so no more hardwired directory list in scripts/genconfig.sh).</p>

<p>Fixed a filehandle leak in getmountlist().
Pass parent pointer to dirtree_add_node() so it can give error messages with
full path. The yesno() function now always reads from stdin and writes to
stderr (we can retry tty checking complexity once we've got commands needing
it).</p>

<p>The open group broke their website so the
<a href=http://opengroup.org/onlinepubs/9699919799>old links</a> to POSIX 2008
now <a href=http://pubs.opengroup.org/onlinepubs/9699919799>need to start with
pubs</a>. Some of the links in the tree have been updated, others haven't while
I wait to see if their webmaster notices and fixes it.</p>

<p>(I note that the current rm implementation is not technically posix compliant
because the standard requires infinite recursion depth and the current
implementation uses one filehandle per level. I can add a config option
to do it Posix's way, which is more brittle and needs extra security checks,
but am waiting for somebody to complain first. The default "ulimit -n" is 1024
filehandles, so drilling down over 1000 nested subdirectories).</p>

<hr><b>November 13, 2012</b>
<blockquote><p>"Rule Six: The winning team shall be the first team that wins."
- The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.</p></blockquote>

<p><a href=downloads/toybox-0.4.1.tar.bz2>Toybox 0.4.1</a> is based on
<a href=http://landley.net/hg/toybox/shortlog/691>commit 691</a>.</p>

<p>Elie De Brauwer contributed usleep, Ashwini Kumar contributed du, and
Kyungwan Han contributed vconfig. Other new commands include switch_root and
md5sum, and the remaining shell wrappers are now proper commands (dos2unix,
unix2dos).</p>

<p>The patch command now supports -l, and gethostname is now enabled by
default. The df command follows symlinks to get the actual device name.
Felix Janda added -m support to wc (for utf8).</p>

<p>On the infrastructure side, the commands have now been grouped into
"posix", "lsb", and "other" subdirectories (for things required by Posix-2008,
the Linux Standard Base 4.1, and commands in neither). This affects menuconfig
and the actual source layout (toys/cp.c is now toys/posix/cp.c, and so on).
An android directory is planned (see the updated
<a href=roadmap.html#android>android roadmap analysis</a>).</p>

<p>The FLAG_ macros for command option parsing and TT alias for the command's
global block are now automatically generated, commands should
#define FOR_commandname before #including <toys.h> to get the macros for that
command.</p>

<p>An upgrade to the build infrastructure now allows commands with _ and -
in them, such as switch_root.</p>

<p>Bugfixes: Avery Pennarun spotted a case where ls showed uid twice instead of
uid and gid, and that nice was using the wrong range of numbers.
The ls command also recursed inappropriately last time (not quite
properly converted for the dirtree changes last release), and now it's
fixed. Roy Tam pointed out a glitch in sh, and fixed df's percentage
calculation to match the POSIX spec. The kernel build didn't like our mktemp
and it does now. The wc command wasn't quite posix compliant (trailing spaces
break stuff). The ls command recursed inappropriately last time (not quite
properly converted for the dirtree changes last release), and now it's
fixed. The catv command wasn't displaying byte 255 correctly. Some lib
fixes (thinko in xpidfile). Fixed uname -m when running a 32 bit x86 binary
on an x86-64 host (it lies and says the system is i686, i586, or i486 depending
on what the toolchain that built the binary supported. This makes builds in
a 32 bit chroot on a 64 bit kernel break less.) The df command was checking
partitions in the wrong order (displaying undermounts instead of overmounts:
this used to work but some library code changed out from under it and it
wasn't updated to match until now). Felix Janda filled out the test suite
some more. The patch file creation logic got tweaked several times to
successfully apply more patches. Support for older (pre 2.10) glibc
versions was added to portability.h.</p>

<p>Miscelaneous cleanups all around (mknod, sha1sum, logname), including a
rewrite of taskset to be less dependent on libc getting the headers right. All
the command headers should now point to the current relevant standards
document, where applicable.</p>

<p>This news page had old news entries from before the relaunch moved into
a separate <a href=oldnews.html>oldnews</a> page.</p>

<p>I forgot to create <a href=bin>static binaries</a> last time, but they're
back now.</p>
</span>

<hr><b>July 23, 2012</b>
<blockquote><p>"Ford", Arthur said. "There's an infinite number of monkeys
out here who want to talk to us about this script for Hamlet they've worked
out." - The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.</p></blockquote>

<p><a href=downloads/toybox-0.4.0.tar.bz2>Toybox 0.4.0</a> is based on
<a href=http://landley.net/hg/toybox/shortlog/640>commit 640</a>.</p>

<p>The new <a href=status.html>status page</a> is calculated from
the roadmap info, and should be easier to keep up to date in future.</p>

<p>Andre Renaud contributed od and modinfo. Elie De Brauwer contributed
taskset, bugfixes to cmp and tail, and tests for sort and tail. Kyungwan Han
contributed passwd. Gaurang Shastri contributed w. Ashwini Sharma spotted a
case where dirtree was adding extra slashes to a path.</p>

<p>I rewrote od, cleaned up comm, documented the
<a href=code.html#lib_llist>llist</a> and
<a href=code.html#lib_dirtree>dirtree</a> infrastructure, added an -r option
to date (and fixed a bug where -u wouldn't override /etc/localtime),
fixed bugs in chmod +stw, fixed ls to show suid bits properly when the
corresponding executable bit wasn't set, and worked around a longstanding
glibc bug where static linking prevents stdout from automatically flushing
pending output on exit.</p>

<hr><b>June 25, 2012</b>
<blockquote><p>"For a moment, nothing happened. Then, after a second or so, nothing continued to happen." - The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.</p></blockquote>

<p><a href=downloads/toybox-0.3.1.tar.bz2>Toybox 0.3.1</a> is based on commit
<a href=http://landley.net/hg/toybox/shortlog/607>commit 607</a>. It's
mostly a bugfix release for ls -l (which was unhappy on targets other than
x86-64), plus a new "date" from Andre Renaud and rewritten chgrp/chown which
now support the full set of posix flags, plus a little work on the test
suite and some more header tweaks towards eventual compatability with the
musl libc.</p>

<p>The todo list runneth over, but "release early, release often", so here
it is. The roadmap and documentation are a bit behind, and I've got ~40
pending submissions to review. I need to catch up...</p>
</span>

<hr><b>June 12, 2012</b>
<blockquote><p>"For instance, on the planet Earth, man had always assumed that
he was more intelligent than dolphins because he had achieved so much - the
wheel, New York, wars and so on - whilst all the dolphins had ever done was
muck about in the water having a good time. But conversely, the dolphins had
always believed that they were far more intelligent than man - for precisely
the same reasons." - The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.</p></blockquote>

<p>It's well past time for <a href=downloads/toybox-0.3.0.tar.bz2>toybox 0.3.0</a>,
so here it is, based
on <a href=http://landley.net/hg/toybox/shortlog/595>commit 595</a>, and the
statically linked <a href=downloads/binaries>prebuilt binaries</a> should
actually be statically linked this time (thanks Ashwini Sharma for spotting
that).</p>

<p>It's hard to figure out where to cut a release, because development
doesn't stop. "Long before now" is the obviuos answer, of course.
The project's maintainer also moved house during this development cycle, which
threw things off for a bit (so many boxes). Releases should hopefully be a bit
more frequent from here on.</p>

<p>The big things Rob worked on this time were the new dirtree (directory
tree traversal) infrastructure, and a complete rewrite of ls using that
which should now implement all 26 posix options.</p>

<p>Georgi Chorbadzhiyski added printenv, whoami, mkdir, mkfifo, chmod, chown,
chgrp, and uniq. He also added fraction and extension support to sleep (so if
you need a quarter-second sleep, it can do that now), and fixed a build bug
on slackware.</p>

<p>Daniel Walter contributed a string to mode_t parser (in use by chmod and
mkdir -m).  Ilya Kuzmich contributed comm. Elie De Brauwer added mountpoint,
vmstat, logname, login, and mktemp. Kevin Chase did some portability cleanups.
Pere Orga fixed some documentation.</p>

<p>The "tac" and "clear" commands are now normal commands instead of shell
wrappers, and the header #includes have been cleaned up a bit to remove
deprecated functions and attempt to increase compatability with the bionic and
musl C libraries, "tail" should now use lseek() for large files, and "id" got
some cleanups and bugfixes.</p>

<p>The new TOYBOX_FLOAT configuration option selects whether or not
to include floating point support (for embedded targets where that's
problematic).</p>

<p>Several random bugfixes: unshare() might actually build portably now,
yes 'n' | cp -i should no longer bypass stdin and prompt via the tty, the
SUID support no longer drops permissions going through the toybox
multiplexer command, and a bugfix to xargs -0 means it should no longer
segfault. (I have a pending bug report about xargs not doing the full
posix whitespace handling that -0 obsoleted, but I'll deal with that next
release.)</p>

<p>The build infrastructure is now automatically generating FLAG_ macros
for the options, but currently with the wrong names. Some more macro glue
is necessary, which I haven't quite figured out how to do yet.</p>

<p>A defconfig toybox at the start of the $PATH has successfully built
Linux From Scratch (in my Aboriginal Linux project). The commands that
'default n' in the config are often still broken, cleanup is ongoing.
(The new dirtree stuff broke several of them that haven't been converted
yet, but if I wait until everything works we won't have a release before
1.0, so here's a checkpoint.)</p>


<hr><b>March 3, 2012</b>

<blockquote><p>"They went unnoticed at Goonhilly, passed over Cape Canaveral
without a blip, and Woomera and Jodrell Bank looked straight through them.
Which was a pity, because it was exactly the sort of thing they'd been looking
for all these years."</p></p>- The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy.</p>
</p></blockquote>

<p>Here's <a href=downloads/toybox-0.2.1.tar.bz2>toybox 0.2.1</a> based
on <a href=http://landley.net/hg/toybox/shortlog/512>commit 512</a>.  This
time around, there are statically linked <a href=downloads/binaries>prebuilt
binaries</a> for various embedded targets.</p>

<p>It's been a busy few weeks, almost entirely due to new contributors. (I
have not quite been keeping up.)</p>

<p>Elie De Brauwer contributed free, uptime, swapon, swapoff, lsmod, mknod,
insmod, rmmod, and fixed a bug in basename.  Andre Renaud contributed ls, ln,
realpath, and hostname. Andres Heck contributed pidof and killall.  Daniel
Walter wrote kill and extended id. Timothy Elliott contributed tail and tests
for cmp. Frank Bergmann sent a warning fix. Bryce Fricke added -i to cp.
Nathan McSween pointed out an optimization. Georgi Chorbadzhiyski fixed
cross compiling to work more reliably.</p>

<p>(My own contribution this time around was just tightening up other people's
code, a build fix to unshare, some random bugfixes, and so on. My only new
code this time around was writing a bash replacement for the existing python
bloat-o-meter.)</p>

<p>Last time (the 0.2.0 release) included the first pass at an id command from
Tim Bird, env and basename from Tryn Mirell, cmp and head from Timothy Elliott,
more bugfixes from Nathan McSween and Elie De Brauwer, and Luis Felipe Strano
Moraes did a first pass at the who command plus other bugfixes and
optimizations.</p>

<p>(For that release I did xargs, cal, truncate, unlink, nohup, tty, wc, link,
dirname, unshare, and various infrastructure tweaks, but it took me 3 months
and those guys did their stuff in a week or so.)</p>


<hr><b>February 12, 2012</b>
<blockquote><p>
"for though it has many omissions and contains much that is apocryphal, or at
least wildly inaccurate, it scores over the older, more pedestrian work in two
important respects..."</p>
<p> - The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy</p></blockquote>

<p>Here's the first BSD licensed release,
<a href=downloads/toybox-0.2.0.tar.bz2>toybox-0.2.0</a>, more a synchronization
point than anything particularly useful.  47 commands in a reasonably
ready-to-use state (what "make defconfig" builds), another ten or so partially
finished stubs ("make allyesconfig"), and several
patches pending on the mailing list I need to review and merge.</p>

<p>More to come...</p>

<hr>
<p><b>November 15, 2011</b> - Back from the dead, Toybox is now under a 2
clause BSD license, and aiming to become the default command line
implementation of Android systems everywhere.</p>

<p>More to come...</p>

<hr>

<p><a href=oldnews.html>Old news</a> from before the relaunch.</p>

<!--#include file="footer.html" -->