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Re: Meta-o does what again?

Subject: Re: Meta-o does what again?
Date: Sat, 5 May 2007 14:17:23 -0500 CDT

I notice with some happiness that someone has already brought this 
question up, and I can reply in a thread instead of opening a brand-new 

  Me, I recently patched my Slackware-11.0 because of some security 
bulletins, and one of the patches broke my then-currently-installed 
Midnight Commander, which had previously been working very well. Suddenly, 
I started to get error messages flashing up, which said that I cannot 
enter a certain directory, and I would get bumped back to $HOME, and such. 
It cured the problem when I went over to the slackware-current tree and 
borrowed the source file from there and installed it from source, 
compiling with the Slackbuild script, then installing the resulting 
package. After this, Midnight Commander worked again. However, I noticed 
immediately and with some irritation the behavior which has already been 
described in this thread. Namely, Alt-O no longer opens the same directory 
in the opposite panel, but now gives me the directory above it.

The problem, as I see it, is more or less like this:

Judging from what I read already in this thread, it seems that there is a 
belief that the behavior of Alt-O was somehow "broken" because it was not 
doing what the developers had been intending, all along (inspite of the 
fact that AFAICT it was doing all along what the documentation said all 
along that it was doing, as quoted in one of the letters in this thread 
already). That's one side of the issue. OTOH, I am a user who has grown 
accustomed to the previous behavior over a time interval of more than ten 
(10) years that I have been using Midnight Commander and I have used that 
feature on a regular basis. It does things that I find convenient and it 
makes my work go faster. And, most especially, I am used to it. Thus, when 
someone suddenly gets around to fixing an old "bug" it thereby disrupts my 
work flow every time that I have to remember that it is now "fixed." That 
is frustrating. It seems to me that what was fixed was not broken.

Me, I think Alt-O it was working just fine the way it was. I don't _want_ 
to go and "browse" some directory. I already know where my files are. What 
I want to do instead is to get work done without having to re-learn what I 
learned to do almost without conscious thought, over the last ten years. 
So for me, I am very sorry, your improvement or bugfix about this is not 
an improvement. I would be very glad if anyone can send me a patch which 
puts this back the way it was. I am sorry if I have come on too strong, 
but this morning the aggravation just got to be too much, so for this 
reason I sought out your website, checked the mail archives to see if 
anyone else had experienced this new, weird behavior and had already asked 
about it, and when I had read what was there, I subscribed to the list in 
order to write this.

Also, if I am making anyone unhappy who is reading this because he feels 
his efforts to improve a good product are being slighted, please keep in 
perspective that I have been a very satisfied user of Midnight Commander 
from the first time that I installed Linux, sometime around 1995. I have 
tried other file browsers and file managers and like none of them so well. 
So you who took the trouble to write this program must have been doing 
something right. If I never used this product I would not be writing this, 
after all. But, on the contrary, I find it to be without substitute.

As I said, please send me the patch, or direct me to the patch, which will 
fix this. And tell me, to which particular code I should apply it -- which 
version number or whatever. If you like, go ahead and specify code from 
your CVS or SVN tree and not a release version. That would be fine with 

Theodore Kilgore
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