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Thread: Is 'Make Link' a 'FAIL' awaiting a bug-fix?

  1. #11
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    Re: Is 'Make Link' a 'FAIL' awaiting a bug-fix?

    Yes, convoluted is good description.

    For that reason, I believe that 'Make Link' should not be available from the Rclick menu.
    It is just too similar to 'create shortcut', and even appears as if it's a shortcut, yet it is an entirely different concept - better suited to users who understand how it actually functions and are aware of the orphaning of the original bakup file.

    I propose, it should be in the main menu, and 'Make Launcher' should take its place in the Rclick.

    To this end, I have posted this to the ideas sandbox (because it is clearly not a bug).

    http://brainstorm.ubuntu.com/idea/30242/

    The site is linked to this one, but you need to create another account , in order to post, and vote on the suggestions.

    At the moment the suggestion is awaiting moderation, before it passes thru to the voting stage.

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  2. #12
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    Re: Is 'Make Link' a 'FAIL' awaiting a bug-fix?

    OK, I think I've found your problem. When you edit your symlink with gedit, the backup is a regular file (not a symlink to the backup).

    Code:
    wim@i3-2120:~/test$ ls -l
    total 12
    -rw-rw-r-- 1 wim wim 231 Oct 16 16:26 abc.txt
    -rw-rw-r-- 1 wim wim 111 Oct 16 16:23 abc.txt~
    lrwxrwxrwx 1 wim wim  22 Oct 16 16:24 Link to abc.txt -> /home/wim/test/abc.txt
    -rw-rw-r-- 1 wim wim 221 Oct 16 16:26 Link to abc.txt~
    wim@i3-2120:~/test$

    PS
    12.04 behaves the same as 10.04 as described in post #9
    Last edited by Wim Sturkenboom; October 16th, 2012 at 04:04 PM. Reason: Added PS
    If you don't make backups of your important data, your data is obviously not important to you.

  3. #13
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    Re: Is 'Make Link' a 'FAIL' awaiting a bug-fix?

    Quote Originally Posted by Wim Sturkenboom View Post
    OK, I think I've found your problem. When you edit your symlink with gedit, the backup is a regular file (not a symlink to the backup).

    Code:
    wim@i3-2120:~/test$ ls -l
    total 12
    -rw-rw-r-- 1 wim wim 231 Oct 16 16:26 abc.txt
    -rw-rw-r-- 1 wim wim 111 Oct 16 16:23 abc.txt~
    lrwxrwxrwx 1 wim wim  22 Oct 16 16:24 Link to abc.txt -> /home/wim/test/abc.txt
    -rw-rw-r-- 1 wim wim 221 Oct 16 16:26 Link to abc.txt~
    wim@i3-2120:~/test$
    Yes.
    That is.... I presume that 'symlink' is the appropriate term for the link file created by the 'Make Link' command.

    I created a link to a radio telephone manual - the phone being so complex that I needed the manual rapidly to hand just so I could begin to learn to use the functions real time.
    But I noted that when I edited the name (cos it was really long) for the icon, the result actually changed the name of the pdf file.

    Obviously I didn't want to do that - I just wanted a snappy link to a doc.
    This caused me to run some tests, and the confusion grew, particularly as it seemed that I now had 4 files all corresponding to the testdoc size at different save points.

    As you point out, by launching the symlink for editing, I thought I was launching the original file, but in fact I was editing the symlink, which then gained a bakup which became the bakup for the original file.
    The original file bakup was then orphaned from the process.

    I was left with:
    1 symlink
    1 symlink backup (which in fact it was not, as it was a full sized doc bakup)
    1 original doc (correctly updated)
    1 original doc bakup (no longer updated yet masquerading as a bakup)

    ( as your tests show)

    I just think this is way too complicated for the unsuspecting user.

    Hey..... it was way too complicated for me, and I've been working with PC's since the Hercules Graphics Card was the biggest advance in computing technology. LOL
    Last edited by Ace.....; October 16th, 2012 at 05:04 PM.
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  4. #14
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    Re: Is 'Make Link' a 'FAIL' awaiting a bug-fix?

    by launching the symlink for editing, I thought I was launching the original file
    You are editing the original file, just under another name. But I (finally) start to understand where your confusion comes from

    FYI vi shows the same behaviour as gedit. So I assume they just 'open the file' without caring about the fact that it's a symlink or not.
    If you don't make backups of your important data, your data is obviously not important to you.

  5. #15
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    Re: Is 'Make Link' a 'FAIL' awaiting a bug-fix?

    As far as the brainstorm - this isn't a Unity or even Ubuntu thing, nautilus now uses 'make link' instead of 'create launcher/shortcut' (symlink vs. a .desktop
    So as far as nautilus 3.x+ don't see Ubuntu having much interest in modifying in this regard.

    Text editors that create backups will name the backup based on the filename opened, again don't see that easily changed. (and really not really Ubuntu's concern, up to the app to address if at all.

  6. #16
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    Re: Is 'Make Link' a 'FAIL' awaiting a bug-fix?

    Quote Originally Posted by Wim Sturkenboom View Post
    You are editing the original file, just under another name. But I (finally) start to understand where your confusion comes from

    FYI vi shows the same behaviour as gedit. So I assume they just 'open the file' without caring about the fact that it's a symlink or not.
    Yes, that's exactly the problem.

    The os/add-on package does not create a bakup of the symlink (if it was changed).
    It creates a bakup of the file that is being linked to.

    IE. if you change a file that is 29bytes in size, you do not expect its bakup to jump to (say) 1Mb in size.

    As Lewis said, and I'm relying on him being correct...... this is normal.

    The question is...... whether this follows 'good working practice'?

    It may do. vis a vis what 'make Link' was designed to do.

    But this begs the further question:

    Should not the bakup sys recognise the symlink, and if it has changed then say, a symlink of 29 bytes might become a symlink of 30 bytes (but not 1Mb).

    Plus..... the fact that Nautilus fails to report the file size correctly, means that confusion reigns.
    There is no distinction between the genuine symlink file and its bakup which is reported as being the same size (yet they are totally and utterly completely different files - one being a link, and one being a doc, for example).

    For myself, the prob is that this thread contains a lot of viewers, but very few are jumping in to defend 'Make Link' (actually almost nobody, cos Lewis was merely explaining how it worked - and only by implication, does that mean there is good reason behind its methodology).

    I think there has to be reasons for how it works (in this convoluted manner).

    If nobody is jumping in..... then perhaps it means there is no support for its methodology, and how it integrates with auto-file-bakup.

    Hence my post to the 'ideas sandbox'.

    I think that the 'thread readers' should get off the fence, and state whether they are content with the current implementation of 'the ability to create a launch link to a doc'.

    That is not to say they are against 'Make Link'......
    ... but more on whether this command creates confusion in the way it is implemented.

    Is that fair?

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  7. #17
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    Re: Is 'Make Link' a 'FAIL' awaiting a bug-fix?

    Symlinks have been around since 1978 (before Hercules graphics!). They have always worked consistently and are one of the strengths of UNIX-like OSes; they are even beginning to appear on Windows.

    I agree Unity users should be able to create launchers more easily. As for the backup story, as mc4man has said, it has nothing to do with Nautilus but rather with the text editor. Should it dump the backup text in the current directory with the current filename + '~'? Or should it track where the file actually is and make a backup there? There is no point in making a backup of the symlink itself, it's just a pointer, it wouldn't change at all.

    You should wrap your head around the concept of the old symlink and embrace it, not fight it.

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  8. #18
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    Re: Is 'Make Link' a 'FAIL' awaiting a bug-fix?

    Should not the bakup sys recognise the symlink, and if it has changed then say, a symlink of 29 bytes might become a symlink of 30 bytes (but not 1Mb).
    There is no such thing as a 'backup sys' It's a functionality of the editor in use. In vi, I had to switch it on. The editors just use fopen(); they don't stat()/lstat() the argument that is passed to them first to see if it's a file or a link.

    Plus..... the fact that Nautilus fails to report the file size correctly, means that confusion reigns.
    In my case Nautilus reports correctly every time.

    There is no distinction between the genuine symlink file and its bakup which is reported as being the same size (yet they are totally and utterly completely different files - one being a link, and one being a doc, for example).
    There is; just check the icon to see the difference. And in icon view, you can even include the type under the icon so it tells you in text that it is a link; just setup the preferences in nautilus for that.

    I think that the 'thread readers' should get off the fence, and state whether they are content with the current implementation of 'the ability to create a launch link to a doc'.
    Yep, I am. When I saw the option 'make link', it behaved as I expected by creating a symlink.
    Last edited by Wim Sturkenboom; October 17th, 2012 at 02:58 AM.
    If you don't make backups of your important data, your data is obviously not important to you.

  9. #19
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    Re: Is 'Make Link' a 'FAIL' awaiting a bug-fix?

    Well I think it is good that users are defending Make Link, cos at least it shows why it was included.

    @Lewis I think your last line is an important statement
    You should wrap your head around the concept of the old symlink and embrace it, not fight it.

    This is surely correct - as is:
    I agree Unity users should be able to create launchers more easily.

    You are obviously correct re there being no need to back up the symlink etc.
    But you understand that my concern was always the confusion, created from the 'displayed filename stating it is a bakup of the symlink' and the misleading file size reporting (clarified by Krusader).

    But don't forget.... I now understand all this.
    The issue is 'that I didn't understand this', and neither did the fist chap who responded.

    The obvious remark 'well you have to learn' is all well and good, if you realise that there is something to learn.
    Hence my proposal to return 'Make Launcher' to the menu system - indicating, just by its presence, that it must be different to 'Make Link'.

    @Wim Sorry about the term bakup sys I didn't know what it was/is called, but I meant the sys that auto creates a 'bakup file copy' indicated by ~.

    Re Filesize misreporting: Krusader reports a different filesize to that reported by Nautilus re symlinks.
    As to the confusion this causes - see the 1st & 2nd posts of this thread.

    Re distinction between the two 'Link to *******' files (doc & symlink) you are correct - I'm evidently losing my marbles.

    Apart from that latter fact...... it has been a good thread.
    I've marked it as solved because the title question has been answered.

    I've just checked the progress of
    http://brainstorm.ubuntu.com/idea/30242/

    Thank you Wim for clarifying the misunderstanding of the Moderator.

    A shame he didn't see fit to approve it for 'voting'
    I can't see any reason why 'providing Make Launcher' could be anything but beneficial.

    At the very least it deserves a vote
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  10. #20
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    Re: Is 'Make Link' a 'FAIL' awaiting a bug-fix?

    Quote Originally Posted by Ace..... View Post
    @Wim Sorry about the term bakup sys I didn't know what it was/is called, but I meant the sys that auto creates a 'bakup file copy' indicated by ~.
    The editor

    Quote Originally Posted by Ace..... View Post
    Re Filesize misreporting: Krusader reports a different filesize to that reported by Nautilus re symlinks.
    As to the confusion this causes - see the 1st & 2nd posts of this thread.
    The only thing I found in Nautilus is that I have to refresh (<F5>) to see the correct results.
    If you don't make backups of your important data, your data is obviously not important to you.

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