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Date: Thu, 3 Mar 2005 13:29:23 +0300
From: Solar Designer <>
Subject: glibc update - strlc*()


I've just put put a new Owl-current snapshot and thought it'd be fair
to warn the fellow owl-users that this will slightly break things for
those who will be updating from the previous snapshot.

In the previous snapshot, the OpenBSD-derived strlcpy(3) and strlcat(3)
functions were introduced into glibc along with other patches we've
taken from ALT Linux.  These functions are nice to have and they can
readily benefit a number of packages, however our inclusion of them in
the shared libc would result in certain program binaries built on Owl
being non-portable to other Linux distributions.  This is undesired.
Thus, in this new snapshot I've applied the workaround suggested by
Pavel Kankovsky, which is to move these functions into libc_nonshared.a.
This means that the functions are available with dynamic linking but
are nevertheless linked in statically.

Unfortunately, this also means that the few strlc*()-using binaries
built on the previous Owl-current snapshot will not work on this new
snapshot.  For RPM packages, you'll get complaints about unsatisfied
dependencies on "".  Of Owl packages, this
affects libpcap, openssh, and procmail.  One possible workaround is to
install glibc manually with "rpm -Uvh --nodeps glibc-*", then proceed
to re-install the packages rebuilt against the new glibc with "--force"
(if you're brave enough, this may be done on a live system remotely:
the running sshd will stay alive and will hold a copy of the old glibc
until it's restarted).  A cleaner workaround is to "rpm -e" those
packages prior to running "make installworld" to update the system
(this stops sshd).

The good news is that this change should prevent this kind of problems
with these functions in the future, in particular when moving programs
from Owl to other systems.

Alexander Peslyak <solar at>
GPG key ID: B35D3598  fp: 6429 0D7E F130 C13E C929  6447 73C3 A290 B35D 3598 - bringing security into open computing environments

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