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Date: Sat, 28 Mar 2015 17:37:38 -0400
From: Rich Felker <>
Subject: Re: who: /dev/null/utmp: Not a directory

On Sat, Mar 28, 2015 at 05:26:06PM -0400, John Mudd wrote:
> I got the error when trying to run "who" from musl compiled coreutils
> package. I assume there's a good reason but I have to ask...
> Why not set _PATH_UTMP to /var/run/utmp instead? Or set it at build time
> based on actual utmp location?
> ../include/paths.h:#define _PATH_UTMP    "/dev/null/utmp"
> ../include/utmp.h:#define _PATH_UTMP "/dev/null/utmp"

The intent was/is to avoid the creation of a utmp file since musl does
not use or support it. However the error you're reporting has been a
recurring topic so perhaps we should do something different. I'm not
sure what. From the app side, --disable-utmp might be useful if it's
available, since trying to use utmp is not going to do anything


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