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Old 07-04-2016, 11:29 AM   #1
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Registered: Jul 2016
Location: Calcutta, India
Distribution: Kali Linux
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"cd //" changes directory to //

I was just playing with the Kali Linux terminal until I had mistakenly entered cd //, and to my surprise the directory indeed changed to //. I thought this might be some bug in Kali but Ubuntu does that too.
Moreover, creating a directory in //, creates a directory in / too. What is happening here? Are they same thing? Then why two locations?

root@host:~# cd //
root@host://# ls
0          boot  home        lib64       mnt   root  srv  usr
bin        dev   initrd.img  lost+found  opt   run   sys  var
blacklist  etc   lib         media       proc  sbin  tmp  vmlinuz
root@host://# mkdir example
root@host://# cd /
root@host:/# ls
0          boot  example     lib         media  proc  sbin  tmp  vmlinuz
bin        dev   home        lib64       mnt    root  srv   usr
blacklist  etc   initrd.img  lost+found  opt    run   sys   var
root@bhost:/# rm -r example
Old 07-04-2016, 11:51 AM   #2
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Location: Pictland
Distribution: Linux Mint 18.1 MATE
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Check out section E10 in the Bash FAQ here:

E10) Why does `cd //' leave $PWD as `//'?

POSIX.2, in its description of `cd', says that *three* or more leading
slashes may be replaced with a single slash when canonicalizing the
current working directory.

This is, I presume, for historical compatibility. Certain versions of
Unix, and early network file systems, used paths of the form
//hostname/path to access `path' on server `hostname'.

Last edited by hydrurga; 07-04-2016 at 12:06 PM.
Old 07-04-2016, 11:56 AM   #3
Registered: Apr 2013
Location: Massachusetts
Distribution: Debian
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I haven't found an answer to that on Linux Questions, but here's an answer from Stack Overflow:
To paraphrase that answer, three or more consecutive slashes will always be interpreted as a single slash, and two consecutive slashes at the beginning of the path may have special significance (e.g., remote file access as //hostname/path) in some implementations.
Old 07-04-2016, 12:38 PM   #4
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Distribution: Slackware
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Normal in Kali to have vmlinuz + initrd in / ?


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