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Re: Strangeness when binary executable overwritten by text -- bug or feature?


On Wed, Oct 31, 2018 at 09:14:40AM -0500, Richard Owlett wrote:
> Debian 9.1 with MATE installed from DVD set.
> Due a non-reproducible sequence of events, a binary executable was over written by the contents of a man page in pure text format. For unknown reason, the
> resulting file was tagged as executable.

Replace your HDD today, don't give it another chance to corrupt your

> A custom MATE launcher pointed the corrupted file.
> When the launcher icon was clicked there was no response whatsoever.
> Including *NO ERROR MESSAGE*
> Is this a bug or a feature?
> If a feature, why?

A (mis)feature. Any executable text file without defined shebang is a
shell script. In this case - a syntactically invalid shell script.
So it can be executed, but the child shell will exit immediately.