Notepad, WordPad, iPad -- a pad's a pad, right?


Analyst calls this IT pilot fish with a service request: He wants some "programming" and an explanation of "how an email is made."

"The request included the run from the previous night," says fish. "I went through the usual steps and got the account and hostname from the output."

As fish suspected, it's a script run automatically on a Unix server by the root account's crontab process. He emails a copy of the script to the analyst.

Analyst replies: "I can't open the file sent, convert to Notepad and put in proper order."

Puzzled fish responds: "I can't open your meaning. Does the file appear as one long line? If so, use WordPad to open the file."

And that, he figures, should resolve any potential Unix-to-Windows issues. He marks the case closed and moves on.

But soon another email arrives: "I can't read the long string. Don't know where the line break should be. Need someone that understands it to break the line in the proper place."

Fish sighs, runs the file through a utility to convert Unix-style line breaks to DOS-style line breaks, and gives the file a .TXT extension.

Then he hits reply again: "Please use WORDPAD. It'll open either Windows- or Unix-formatted text files. In case that doesn't work, here's a version that's formatted for Windows/DOS."

Reports fish, "I attached the new file and sent it. But which part of 'use WordPad' is not clear?"

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