Monday, July 22, 2013

Different behaviour of Source or (dot) or (period) operator when passing arguments in Linux and Solaris

The source operator is used for including another file in current script and execute the lines in that file in the current shell context. Therefore the final result is same as that the lines in the sourced file were physically presented in the parent file. I recently found out that the behavior of source operator is different in Linux and Solaris.
If you pass command line arguments to a file you are sourcing inside another shell script, and when you retrieve the passed command line arguments in child (sourced) file,

In Linux,
You will get the parameters you passed as command line parameters when you sourcing the file.

In Solaris,
You will get the command line parameters passed to the parent file as the command line parameters for the child file also.

Therefore if you have a file named test.sh with following lines, (testEcho.sh will echo all the command line arguments passed to it).

. "./testEcho.sh" ted
sh ./testEcho.sh ted


and if you execute it like below,
sh ./test.sh param1 param2 param3


Output in linux,
ted
ted

Output in Solaris,
param1 param2 param3
      ted


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