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From: "Ævar Arnfjörð Bjarmason" <>
Cc: "Junio C Hamano" <>,
	"H . Peter Anvin" <>,
	"Ævar Arnfjörð Bjarmason" <>
Subject: [PATCH 1/2] cat-file doc: document that -e will return some output
Date: Wed, 10 Jan 2018 12:55:53 +0000	[thread overview]
Message-ID: <> (raw)
In-Reply-To: <>

The -e option added in 7950571ad7 ("A few more options for
git-cat-file", 2005-12-03) has always errored out with message on
stderr saying that the provided object is malformed, currently:

    $ git cat-file -e malformed; echo $?
    fatal: Not a valid object name malformed

A careful reader of this documentation would be mislead into thinking
the could write:

    if ! git cat-file -e "$object" [...]

As opposed to:

    if ! git cat-file -e "$object" 2>/dev/null [...]

To check whether some arbitrary $object string was both valid, and
pointed to an object that exists.

Signed-off-by: Ævar Arnfjörð Bjarmason <>
 Documentation/git-cat-file.txt | 7 ++++---
 1 file changed, 4 insertions(+), 3 deletions(-)

diff --git a/Documentation/git-cat-file.txt b/Documentation/git-cat-file.txt
index fb09cd69d6..f90f09b03f 100644
--- a/Documentation/git-cat-file.txt
+++ b/Documentation/git-cat-file.txt
@@ -42,8 +42,9 @@ OPTIONS
-	Suppress all output; instead exit with zero status if <object>
-	exists and is a valid object.
+	Exit with zero status if <object> exists and is a valid
+	object. If <object> is of an invalid format exit with non-zero and
+	emits an error on stderr.
 	Pretty-print the contents of <object> based on its type.
@@ -168,7 +169,7 @@ If `-t` is specified, one of the <type>.
 If `-s` is specified, the size of the <object> in bytes.
-If `-e` is specified, no output.
+If `-e` is specified, no output, unless the <object> is malformed.
 If `-p` is specified, the contents of <object> are pretty-printed.

  reply	other threads:[~2018-01-10 12:58 UTC|newest]

Thread overview: 7+ messages / expand[flat|nested]  mbox.gz  Atom feed  top
2018-01-10 12:55 [PATCH 0/2] the cat-file -e option doesn't work as documented Ævar Arnfjörð Bjarmason
2018-01-10 12:55 ` Ævar Arnfjörð Bjarmason [this message]
2018-01-10 21:38   ` [PATCH 1/2] cat-file doc: document that -e will return some output Junio C Hamano
2018-01-10 22:09     ` Junio C Hamano
2018-01-10 12:55 ` [PATCH 2/2] cat-file: -e should not emit output on stderr Ævar Arnfjörð Bjarmason
2018-01-10 20:43 ` [PATCH 0/2] the cat-file -e option doesn't work as documented Junio C Hamano
2018-01-10 20:50   ` Junio C Hamano

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