Bug 55874 - Bad defaults in /usr/bin/texdoc
Summary: Bad defaults in /usr/bin/texdoc
Alias: None
Product: Red Hat Linux
Classification: Retired
Component: tetex
Version: 7.2
Hardware: All
OS: Linux
Target Milestone: ---
Assignee: Tim Waugh
QA Contact: David Lawrence
Depends On:
TreeView+ depends on / blocked
Reported: 2001-11-08 02:22 UTC by Michal Jaegermann
Modified: 2007-04-18 16:38 UTC (History)
0 users

Clone Of:
Last Closed: 2001-11-09 11:50:39 UTC

Attachments (Terms of Use)

External Trackers
Tracker ID Priority Status Summary Last Updated
Red Hat Product Errata RHEA-2001:166 normal SHIPPED_LIVE Updated teTeX packages available 2001-12-11 05:00:00 UTC

Description Michal Jaegermann 2001-11-08 02:22:28 UTC
Description of Problem:

In 'texdoc' script one can find:
: ${TEXDOCVIEW_dvi='xdvi %s &'}
: ${TEXDOCVIEW_pdf='acroread %s &'}
: ${TEXDOCVIEW_ps='ghostview %s &'}
: ${TEXDOCVIEW_html='netscape %s &'}
: ${TEXDOCVIEW_txt="${PAGER-more} %s"}

'acroread' may not even exist for a given platform, and if it
exists nobody says that it will be installed, and this should be
rather 'xpdf'.

'ghostview' is a link, so this is ok, but 'netscape' may become
"iffy" over time.  In any case '-remote' likely should be tried first
to open a page in an already running browser.  Maybe some informative
message should be printed, indicating a possibilty to override a viewer
choice with environment variables, if a requested one does not exist?

Version-Release number of selected component (if applicable):
tetex-1.0.7-30 but the same goes for current tetex from rawhide.

Comment 1 Tim Waugh 2001-11-08 15:18:24 UTC
*shudder*: viewer=`eval echo $viewer | sed -e "s|%s|$filename|g"`

Yes, those defaults are bad on a Red Hat Linux system.  How about these?:

: ${TEXDOCVIEW_dvi='xdvi %s &'}
: ${TEXDOCVIEW_pdf='xpdf %s &'}
: ${TEXDOCVIEW_ps='ghostview %s &'}
if [ -x /usr/bin/mozilla ]
        : ${TEXDOCVIEW_html='mozilla %s &'}
        : ${TEXDOCVIEW_html='netscape %s &'}
: ${TEXDOCVIEW_txt="${PAGER-more} %s"}

I'm not going to put a whole script in there.  The string replacement hack is 
broken enough, without inviting trouble. (See 

Comment 2 Michal Jaegermann 2001-11-08 16:17:21 UTC
> *shudder*: viewer=`eval echo $viewer | sed -e "s|%s|$filename|g"`

I agree with your reaction. :-)  Likely it is not a security threat because
it executes under a user id anyway.  I miss what is the real role of eval here.
But how about something like this instead:

  viewer=$( printf "$viewer" "$filename" )

At least you will make %s useful. :-)

> How about these?

Maybe you should start with a check for galeon first?  It is quite a bit
lighter than both mozilla and netscape.  It will also automatically
reuse an existing running process.  With netscape and mozilla you would
have to use '-remote' flag for that and, at least with netscape, it does
not have an automatic failover to a new process.  Sigh!  One has to do
something of that sort:

  - set 'remote=yes' if viewer is 'netscape -remote ....' or similar
  - do something like this
    if [ "$remote" ] ; then
     if $viewer >/dev/null 2>&1 ; then
         exit 0;  # we managed to hook up to a running browser
        viewer=...  # drop '-remote' flag
    # .... continue as usual

If you do not want to play with that I will not blame you but "galeon first"
would be simple and nice.

Comment 3 Tim Waugh 2001-11-12 22:27:14 UTC
Fixed in tetex-1.0.7-36.3.

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