I just tried out pg_basebackup -R and got the following recovery.conf file:

standby_mode = 'on'
primary_conninfo = 'user=rhaas passfile=''/home/rhaas/.pgpass''
port=5432 sslmode=disable sslcompression=1 target_session_attrs=any'

This seems fairly random to me.  pg_basebackup explains:

                 * Do not emit this setting if: - the setting is "replication",
                 * "dbname" or "fallback_application_name", since these would be
                 * overridden by the libpqwalreceiver module anyway. -
not set or
                 * empty.

...which looks like it got clubbed by pgindent, but anyway I'm not
sure that's the best algorithm.  passfile and target_session_attrs are
both new in v10 and have non-empty default values, yet neither of them
seems like something that you necessarily want in your
automatically-created recovery.conf file.  It seems like it would be
more correct to leave out parameters that are set to the default
value, rather than those that are set to an empty value.

Robert Haas
EnterpriseDB: http://www.enterprisedb.com
The Enterprise PostgreSQL Company

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