[twg-tds] [gaulle@idris.fr: a TDS question]

Paul Vojta vojta at Math.Berkeley.EDU
Wed Jul 2 14:55:30 CEST 2003

> Date: Wed, 2 Jul 2003 09:55:54 +0200
> From: Joachim Schrod <jschrod at acm.org>
> To: TUG WG TeX Directory Structures <twg-tds at mail.tug.org>
> Subject: Re: [twg-tds] [gaulle at idris.fr: a TDS question]
> "RK" == Reinhard Kotucha <reinhard.kotucha at web.de> writes:
> RK> Paul, I know that I can use / with command.com provided by win95++ but
> RK> old "real" M$-DOS required \, as far as I remember.  

No, I used / in DOS 2.1 all the time.  As long as you changed the switch
character (which progressively got harder and harder to change, until
Win 95, etc., would ignore the setting).

> The MS-DOS API supports / as directory separater, starting with at
> least 3.11. And with API I don't mean some C library, but the system
> calls on the assembler level. (I still have the documentation lying
> here around. ;-) Therefore other shells beside command.com supported /
> all the time.

Starting with DOS 2.1, at least.

However, the "therefore" does not necessarily follow.  I guess you could do

	type "file/b" file2

to copy file b in subdirectory file to file2 in the current directory,
but without the quotes, you're asking it to copy "file" in binary mode
to "file2", both in the current directory.  Unless you change the switch
character, of course.

> command.com does not actively turn / into \. And if any tex.ch for DOS
> does so, it's barking up the wrong tree.

Not necessarily.  As a purely internal matter, it may be easier to change
all / to \ (or vice versa) just because checking for one character is
easier than checking for two.

--Paul Vojta, vojta at math.berkeley.edu

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