Re: Magic is useless!

Maciej Stachowiak wrote:

On 07Jan2002 11:13PM (+0800), James Henstridge wrote:

Is it just me, or do file extensions and mime types stored in the filesystem as metadata seem equivalent? Both move with the file in the filesystem (provided the app/user doesn't decide to change them), and won't be available if just reading from a bytestream (in which case you will need to get the information some other way, such as file magic).

The benefit of file extensions is that they are maintained over almost every file system type.

The disadvantage of file extensions is that they limit what the user
can name the file, and break if the user renames the file in an
unapproved way. There are certainly tradeoffs here.

Of course, if the file manager doesn't display the file extensions (such as explorer on Windows, and I believe finder on MacOS also (for UFS partitions)), then the user won't change them. In windows, if you turn on file extension display, it will still warn you if you try to change a file extension.

You could argue that a mime type metadata would be just as fragile as extensions. What happens when a user attempts to change their GIF files to PNG format by simply changing the mime type metadata? They would be just as screwed as if they just changed the file extensions and that was used to determine file type.


Email: james daa com au

[Date Prev][Date Next]   [Thread Prev][Thread Next]   [Thread Index] [Date Index] [Author Index]