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November 25, 2005

Unix Error Messages

[Found at Gotterdammerung where the motto is "Always remember to pillage before you burn!" ...]

At the USENIX Association conference in Atlanta recently [Ed: 1985/1986] a contest was held to invent the most humorous/bizarre/etc UN*X error message of the errno(2) 'EERROR' type. This contest had been tried at an earlier European Users Group meeting, where the winning entry was:
ENOTOBACCO - Read on an empty pipe
You get the idea. A partial [alphabetized] list of 'top(?)' entries from Atlanta [and from several readers of hp.unix] follows; if your pun/wierdness tolerance is low, you may want to abandon ship:
EBEFOREI - Invalid syntax
ECHERNOBYL - Core dumped
ECRAY - Program exited before being run
EDINGDONG - The daemon is dead
EFLAT - System needs tuning
EGEEK - Program written by inept Frat member
EIEIO - Here-a-bug, there-a-bug, ....
EIUD - Missing period
ELECTROLUX - Your code could stand to be cleaned up
EMILYPOST - Wrong fork
END.ARMS.CONTROL - Silo overflow
ENOHORSE - Mount failed
ENONSEQUETOR - C program not derived from main(){printf("Hello, world");}
EWATERGATE - Extended tape gap
EWOK - Aliens sighted
EWOK - Your code appears to have been stir-fried
EWOULDBNICE - The feature you want has not been implemented yet

And finally, a sort-of 'period piece':

A host is a host,
From coast to coast
And nobody talks to a host that's close,
Unless the host that isn't close
Is busy, hung, or dead.

I would also like this new signal to be supported:
SIGNUKE - Nuclear event occurred (cannot be caught or ignored :-)

Posted by Ozguru at November 25, 2005 06:00 AM