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change in sort behavior

From: James Hutt
Subject: change in sort behavior
Date: Sun, 13 Jan 2002 12:55:44 -0800 (PST)

If you have two simple sorted files, and do a merge,
i.e.,  a.txt with b.txt, using sort -m -u , you will
get a merged file correctly.
If one of the files is completely empty, you used to
get the other file as the merge file.  Now, you get an
error --- segmentation fault.  I had to put a return
in my empty file to make it work.  Why do the merge in
the first place?  In the process I developed, I create
the empty file as a starting point for future merges. 
If the file is missing, it gets created automatically
and fills after the first merge.  There are other ways
to do this, but it worked up to now.

my specific example is:

gunzip < a.gz | sort -m -u b - > c.txt
where a is a zipped text file and b is either an empty
file, or, has a return, or, has lines of text with
returns.  c.txt is the sorted output of the merge.  It
worked with the version of bash that came with RH7.0
but does not work with the version that came with

Yours truly,

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