[Python-Dev] casefolding in pathlib (PEP 428)

Larry Hastings larry at hastings.org
Fri Apr 12 23:15:13 CEST 2013

On 04/12/2013 10:05 AM, Guido van Rossum wrote:
> On Fri, Apr 12, 2013 at 1:39 AM, Antoine Pitrou <solipsis at pitrou.net> wrote:
>> I think we want glob("*.py") to find
>> "SETUP.PY" under Windows. Anything else will probably be surprising to
>> users of that platform.
> Yeah, I suppose so. But there are more crazy details. E.g. IIRC
> Windows silently ignores trailing dots in filenames. Do we want
> "*.py." to match SETUP.PY then?

Someone who is fresher than I am at Windows programming should answer 
this, but AFAICT Win32 provides no API that will tell you if a 
particular filename / volume is case sensitive.  The VOLUME2 structure 
from GetVolumeInfo doesn't report anything, and FindFirstFileEx provides 
a special flag for you to tell the OS (!) whether or not you want 
case-sensitive globbing.  The closest I can get with my cursory browsing 
of MSDN is that you could infer case-sensitivity from the filesystem 
reported by GetVolumeInfo, but I doubt even that would be perfect.

My only suggestion: lob the problem back into the user's lap, perhaps 
with something like

     pathlib.cs['/'] = True
     pathlib.cs['/mnt/samba-share'] = False

>> (long filenames appeared in Windows 95!).

That wasn't their first appearance; I'm pretty sure Windows NT 3.1 
supported long filenames in 1992, and though I don't remember 
specifically it's possible NT 3.1 also supported long and short 
filenames for the same file.  Windows 95 was the first appearance of 
VFAT, the clever hack adding support for long and short filenames to FAT 


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