BLFS svn book Shadow- question about a page note

Chris Staub chris at
Tue Jan 5 19:27:17 PST 2010

On 01/05/2010 09:47 PM, Simon Geard wrote:
> Reading that, I think he's actually got a fair point. The intended
> meaning is that if you were previously using ENV_SUPATH to give root a
> different PATH from ordinary users, you would now need to do so by
> modifying root's login scripts.
> But if you read that note, it starts by assuming the reader actually
> knows what ENV_SUPATH is, and why it being no longer supported means
> they have to create a suitable .bashrc file. If they don't know what
> ENV_SUPATH is, they're merely left with a cryptic instruction to create
> a .bashrc file with unspecified content.
> And consider, ENV_SUPATH isn't mentioned in the LFS shadow page, and
> only mentioned in this page in the context of saying it can't be used. A
> typical LFS builder is *not* going to know what that message means.
> A better wording would perhaps be something like:
> Note: The ENV_SUPATH option used to modify root's default path does not
> work with PAM. If you are using this option, you'll need to set the path
> in root's login scripts instead.
> To me, that explains what it does, and makes it clear that if you don't
> use it, you don't need to do anything.
> Simon.

Yeah, I suppose it's would be reasonable to specify what ENV_SUPATH 
does. I think I just let myself get carried away with emphasizing the 
"when is it needed" part and didn't see that yes, he does have a point 
about explaining what that var does.

Although, "If you are using this option" would likely not be necessary, 
as it's part of the default login.defs, so it would pretty much be used 
by everyone. Otherwise, anyone who is using it would add it themselves, 
in which case they wouldn't need to be told what it's for. So...yeah, 
the fact that the user never even creates it themselves would be a valid 
reason to explain exactly what it's for.

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