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[ About ]

CCSH is a scripting language that is intended to be powerful and easy to use for people already familiar with the C language.

[ Features ]

setuid bit on the script will (or should?) do nothing, so there should be no setuid problems.

Shell scripts such as bash, tcsh, etc., are all interpretive. And as such, they incure a lot of run-time overhead. For small scripts, this is fine, but the overhead becomes noticeable in larger scripts.

Languages like Perl compile the language into an internal byte-code, which executes significantly faster than pure interpreters. The overhead cost is a little high on initial execution, but runtime performance is greatly increased. Perl, therfore can handle mid-sized scripts very efficiently.

CCSH actually compiles the script into machine code. It therefore has a lot more overhead on initial execution, but runtime performance is exactly the same as any other compiled program. So CCSH can handle large/complex tasks much more effectively than most scripting languages.

Easy Maintenance
Sites with a minimal administrative workforce don't have to worry about maintaining binary and source files. CCSH takes care of when the file is compiled. An RCS/CVS on your source file is all you need (for sites that care to even have that much source management). Simply execute it as you would any other shell script.

Easy to Program
Everybody knows C, therefore there's little need to learn yet another language. :-) It's also a powerful language, so you can get lots of wonderful things done.

C is everywhere. Therefore your script should work everywhere.

[ Who would use it? ]

[ How it works ]

By harnessing the power of the C compiler (which should have been installed on your system with the rest of your OS), CCSHwill turn your lines of code into bytes of data that the CPU can run directly. Since no intermediary interpretation is done (like bash, csh, etc.), your code can run hundreds of times faster!

Okay, fine. It's a stupid little program that strips the first line of your code, compiles and executes your code via gcc, and creates and removes temp files along the way. And yes, it compiles and executes your code each time you run the script. In the TODOs, I've outlined how I'd implement a caching system to deal with this. But, it's rather complicated (especially in a heterogeneous environment). So I've opted to release this code as more of an amusement piece. I have no serious plans to release new versions. (But may decide to if I get bored. :-)

[ Motivation ]

I worked somewhere once where their reason for using scripting languages instead of C was because they didn't want to maintain 2 files (source and binary) where they could just deal with 1 (a script). Of course, this led to extremely contorted lines in csh, until I learned Perl. Of course no one else there knew Perl, so I don't know how that helps the maintenance issue.

That, and I figured this'd make a cool April Fool's joke. The first public release was on Freshmeat on April 1, 1999. But it's no longer a joke. A friend pointed out that it can easily be made "useful" by simply having a caching system. And I realized that this caching system could also handle heterogenious computing environments, sharing the same source (or script) base off a networked drive. In such environments, this would probably decrease administration work by quite a bit.