Re: SCO's infringing files list

From: Linus Torvalds
Date: Tue Dec 23 2003 - 12:27:07 EST


On Tue, 23 Dec 2003, Mitchell Blank Jr wrote:
> This does seem to be the case - from an FAQ that H J Lu posted about that time:
> | From: hlu@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx (H.J. Lu)
> | Subject: FAQ about gcc (how to compile program under Linux)
> | Date: Sun, 19 Jul 92 06:40:05 GMT
> | [...]
> | Another file, XXXXinc.tar.Z, where XXXX is the current version number
> | of Linux kernel, has all the header files to replace the header files
> | from kernel. YOU MUST INSTALL IT. Please read README for details.

Ok, this is the source.

In particular, I can re-create _exactly_ the linux-0.97 "errno.h" file by
using the "sys_errlist[]" contents from "libc-2.2.2". In particular, this
trivial loop will generate the exact (byte-for-byte) list that is in the

int i;

for (i = 1; i < 122; i++) {
const char *name = names[i];
int n = strlen(name);
char *tabs = "\t\t"+(n > 7);
const char *expl = libc222_errlist[i];
printf("#define\t%s%s%2d\t/* %s */\n",
name, tabs, i, expl);

here, the "names[]" array was filled in with the error names, ie

const char *names[] = { "none",

and the "libc222_errlist[]" array was filled in with the strings found by
just downloading the old "libc-2.2.2" binary that can still be found at

and then just doing a "strings - libc-2.2.2" and "sys_errlist[]" will be

static char *libc222_errlist[] = {
"Unknown error",
"Operation not permitted",

This was literally a five-minute hack (I wrote the silly loop yesterday to
see what it does with the current "strerror()" - there is very good
correlation even today, but using the libc-2.2.2 sys_nerrlist[] you get
_exactly_ the same result).

So this is definitely the source of the kernel error header. It's either a
file from the libc sources, or it is literally auto-generated like the
above (I actually suspect the latter - now that I did the auto-generation
it all felt very familiar, but that may just be my brain rationalizing
things. Humans are good at rationalizing reality.).

Can anybody find the actual libc _sources_? Not the kernel headers that
hjl mentions (those are the old ones from _before_ the change), but the
file "libc-2.2.2.tar.Z"?

Anyway, we know where the kernel header comes from. Let's figure out where
the libc data comes from.

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