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Re: how to check uniqueness of uidNumber ?

As a matter of fact I know C but I'm a little rusty.
That's a great idea but I'm not sure if I have the time to develop it this quarter and unfortunately this quarter is my last before graduation. I suppose I might pick it up afterwards but it is more likely that I will be in panic mode trying to get work sos I don't loose my apt. :-/

I'm working on a php script and a bash script for the purpose... any reason I cannot just touch off a lock file and then check for it?
Hmmm... for speed/scaleability I could check a shell variable instead of a file... assumeing that there are shell variables that users cannot mess with i.e. that ownership *is* an issue with shell variables.

Jim C.

I reckon that David Smith's SQL solution is pretty good, especially if

How would that work without a SQL type backend that will work with it?

you're using something like PHP or Perl. That'd cater for your locking.

If you don't want to learn both PHP and Perl at the same time, a PHP CGI
binary can be made and installed in /usr/local/bin and called from the
command line. Others might advise you to go the whole hog and learn C
:-) but not me.