AUTHORS list and the C locale on Mac OS X

Ken Thomases ken at
Wed Nov 10 14:08:56 CST 2010

On Nov 9, 2010, at 4:29 PM, Reece Dunn wrote:

> You could use autoconf to detect:
>  1/  broken handling of UTF-8 characters by sed;
>  2/  name of LC_ALL flag that handles UTF-8

In theory, you only need to set LC_CTYPE, not any other aspect of the locale.  And for that, you don't need the language or country.  On Mac OS X, the encoding can be bare, such as LC_CTYPE=UTF-8.

The Makefile used to set LANG, then commit 492ac292b918a3369900532e4edfadaeeba32064 changed it to LC_ALL.  That wasn't explained.  I assume it was because LANG could be superseded by LC_* variables in the user's environment, and that is undesirable.

Perhaps another approach would be to explicitly unset LC_ALL and export LC_CTYPE=UTF-8.

On Nov 9, 2010, at 4:13 PM, Charles Davis wrote:

> Unfortunately, I just remembered that the name of the UTF-8 encoding is
> different on Mac OS ('UTF-8') and Linux ('utf8').

Are you sure about that?  Checking on a couple of Linux systems here, the "locale" command reports:

$ locale

Hmm.  However, using a bare encoding for LC_CTYPE doesn't seem to fly on Linux.  Darn, so close to a simple fix. :(


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