[tex-live] Please don't assume case sensitive file system

Reinhard Kotucha reinhard.kotucha at web.de
Fri Oct 2 00:24:13 CEST 2009

On 30 September 2009 Philip TAYLOR (Ret'd) wrote:

 > Reinhard Kotucha wrote:
 > > The root of the evil is that Microsoft doesn't support ASCII (yet)
 > > (while the rest of the world strives after UTF-8).
 > I think you are being a little disingenuous, Reinhard.
 > VAX/VMS not only supported ASCII, it supported case-
 > sensitive and case-insensitive searching, /and/
 > diacritic-sensitive and diacritic-insensitive searching,
 > while at the same time implementing a case-insensitive
 > file system.
 > The latter was a design decision (i.e., intentional),
 > not an artifact or a result of any inability to
 > "support ASCII".

Hi Phil,
I assume that this decision was not made for convenience but due to
limitations of some I/O devices.  It is quite obvious that all system
relevant things were case insensitive.  And the CRLF line breaks are
an indication too, they were required by mechanical teletype machines
only, carriage returns were time consuming.

You assume that Windows is VMS.  I don't know much about VMS but it
seems that Microsoft learned a bit from Unix and understood that it's
not a good idea if features like version control and database support
are part of the OS kernel or the file system.  I'm quite sure that
Windows is *not* VMS.

Anyway, VMS is much older than NT and many of the limitations DEC had
to deal with in the seventies were not relevant any more when
Microsoft came up with what they called "NT", pronounced "New
Technology" (BTW, a funny name for recycled garbage :).

Nowadays these antiques are causing a lot of trouble.  I already
mentioned a problem with SVN, but there are zillions of other

Phil, though IMO this discussion is quite interesting, I fear that
this mailing list is not an appropriate place.  And discussing it by
email is not very convenient anyway.  Do you intend to come to
BachoTeX-2010?  I hope so, at least.  Bachotek is always a good place
for long discussions...

Reinhard Kotucha			              Phone: +49-511-3373112
Marschnerstr. 25
D-30167 Hannover	                      mailto:reinhard.kotucha at web.de
Microsoft isn't the answer. Microsoft is the question, and the answer is NO.

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