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Re: keywords in pg_hba.conf are case-sensitive?

From: Robert Haas <robertmhaas(at)gmail(dot)com>
To: Alvaro Herrera <alvherre(at)commandprompt(dot)com>
Cc: Pg Hackers <pgsql-hackers(at)postgresql(dot)org>
Subject: Re: keywords in pg_hba.conf are case-sensitive?
Date: 2012-02-02 18:07:08
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Lists: pgsql-hackers
On Thu, Feb 2, 2012 at 10:10 AM, Alvaro Herrera
<alvherre(at)commandprompt(dot)com> wrote:
> Err, postgresql.conf processing is case insensitive, which is the most
> closely related example.  Are you saying we should make that case
> sensitive as well?  What I'm saying is that I see no good reason for
> keyword comparison to be case sensitive here.  We don't compare case on
> SQL keywords either.

In some sense this is just a religious question: UNIX commands are
case-sensitive (except on MacOS X, where I keep typing pg_Ctl start by
mistake and it lets me get away with it) and any UNIX purist worth his
salt will tell you that's the one true way.  On the other hand,
ignoring case for comparison purposes has a long and distinguished
history, too, especially outside of computing.  In this particular
case, I am mostly in favor of leaving it alone because I can't see any
real upside to changing it.  Having multiple ways to spell the same
configuration setting, even when they differ only in case, complicates
the job of (for example) anyone who wants to write a pg_hba.conf file
parser: some files will be valid on 9.2 that weren't valid on 9.1, or
(as Tom points out) they might both be valid but mean subtly different
things in corner cases.  If it were already case-sensitive, I would be
in favor of leaving that alone, too; there's just not enough upside to
justifying tinkering with it, IMV.

Robert Haas
The Enterprise PostgreSQL Company

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