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B.4.1 Defining What Is and What Is Not A Bug

Before talking about reporting bugs, let’s define what is a bug, and what is not.

A bug is:

The following things are not bugs, and should not be reported to the bug mailing list. You can ask about them on the “help” mailing list (see Where To Send Non-bug Questions), but don’t be surprised if you get an answer of the form “that’s how gawk behaves and it isn’t going to change.” Here’s the list:

For more information, see Fork My Code, Please!—An Open Letter To Those of You Who Are Unhappy, by Arnold Robbins and Chet Ramey.

A Note About Fuzzers

In recent years, people have been running “fuzzers” to generate invalid awk programs in order to find and report (so-called) bugs in gawk.

In general, such reports are not of much practical use. The programs they create are not realistic and the bugs found are generally from some kind of memory corruption that is fatal anyway.

So, if you want to run a fuzzer against gawk and report the results, you may do so, but be aware that such reports don’t carry the same weight as reports of real bugs do.


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