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Alpha module version numbers

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Elaine -HFB- Ashton
May 15, 2003 06:17
Alpha module version numbers
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I was talking to Autrijus and Leon about version numbers and noticed 
that the documented method of denoting an alpha module release and the 
way that PAUSE and search denote them do not match. From the PAUSE FAQ 
it should be 1.00_00, etc. -

"The automatic integration of your work into several indexes and directory
trees is not always in accordance with what you desire. If you want to
prevent propagation to places outside of your directory, simply choose a
filename that matches /\d\.\d+_\d/, i.e. something that looks like derived
from a perl subversion number (maybe because it is a perl subversion).
PAUSE will leave such distributions untouched: no readme will be
extracted, no index will be updated, no symlinks will be created."

from perlmodlib -

"To be fully compatible with the Exporter and MakeMaker modules you should
store your module's version number in a non-my package variable called
$VERSION.  This should be a floating point number with at least two digits
after the decimal (i.e., hundredths, e.g, $VERSION = "0.01").  Don't use a
"1.3.2" style version."

I am reasonably sure that a 1_00 version number will break Exporter
version checking unless this has changed but I would have expected the
documentation to reflect that change. is the module
that prompted the conversation and it's reasonably clear from the releases 
that these aren't intended to be alpha versions. 

While I prefer the old method it doesn't really matter as long as the
documentation, Exporter and search/PAUSE are all consistent in their
behaviour and documentation.

Perhaps, too, we could do better at making some of the more simple things
obvious/easy which would help authors get the version and packaging of 
their modules right on the first go. Maybe a quick overview email that
details correct version numbering and the current packaging
tools/conventions would get sent to the authors when they receive their 
PAUSE ID confirmation would be helpful? Or ExtUtils::MakeMaker checking
for version numbers and warning authors on ill-formed versions? I don't
really want to pick the scab that is versioning but it seems like very few
modules are using the version number convention correctly, if at all, and
I think a few simple things could help guide authors in the right


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