Process.spawn: behaviour at variance with documentation?

Hello all.

I’m puzzled by the behaviour of Process.spawn. Allow me to
illustrate, with the following short program:


puts ‘Executing first command…’
Process.spawn ‘sh -c :’
sleep 2 # give it time to finish
puts ‘Executing second command…’
Process.spawn ‘:’

On my system (which runs Debian Linux 6.0), the output is as follows:


Executing first command…
Executing second command…
spawn-experiment:4:in spawn': No such file or directory - : (Errno::ENOENT) from spawn-experiment:4:in

strace' shows that, for the second call tospawn’, ruby tries
to execute the command directly, without passing it to the shell.
This appears to contradict the documentation at [1]. Is this a bug?

[1] http://www.ruby-doc.org/core-1.9.3/Process.html#method-c-spawn

Some details about my setup. The output of “ruby -v” is:

ruby 1.9.3p194 (2012-04-20 revision 35410) [x86_64-linux]

The output of “uname -a” is:

Linux asteroid 2.6.32-5-amd64 #1 SMP Sun Sep 23 10:07:46 UTC 2012
x86_64 GNU/Linux

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