false: Try not to be so negative

In the grand scheme of Unix-ish software, I have yet to run across something so contrary, so completely adversarial as false.

Want to know what false looks like when you execute it? Here, take a look.

That’s right. Nothing. Nada. Not even a terse goodbye. No words, no messages, no information to report.

In fact, it’s anything but helpful. It won’t take help flags. It does what it’s supposed to do, but does it unsuccessfully, every time.

Even the man page tells you that. What’s false? Every time, that’s what. Hardly helpful. Hardly useful. Just … false.

Want to know what version it is? false. Want some more help? false. This program is stuck doing nothing, and is quite happy with that fact.

In a small way, it’s genius. Does it work? Yes, just not successfully.

I give up. 😕

P.S., I guarantee this is installed on your system, probably in the omnipresent coreutils package. false.

5 thoughts on “false: Try not to be so negative

  1. Pingback: false | Accidents Happen


    Note that false *does* take command line arguments, namely –help and –version. You just have to call it explicitly as /bin/false, otherwise you end up with the shell builtin of the same name.

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