calculating average of a column of numbers in bash
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Good point, thanks. Yes, security issues are always important to keep in mind and mktemp is useful in that regard.
In this case, however, the reason for removing the files was more operational. The files were local, the script was appending to at least one file, and the results would be calculated incorrectly from the accumulation rather than the single dataset.
While I like the man page for mktemp because of the examples, I would say that one can as easily create filenames by using the $RANDOM value in bash, although one might still want to address the permissions issue. From my perspective the removal of temporary files, say with trap is at least as important as a random name. I don't reboot systems that often, I don't like the clutter in /tmp or elsewhere, and I also don't want to worry about accumulations as above.
Still, consistent use of mktemp or similar facilities can help with security particularly on shared systems ... cheers, makyo