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Re: 5.6.x

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April 28, 2008 09:39
Re: 5.6.x
Message ID:
> a: What's our policy on attempting to support it?

What has to happen (IMHO) is that found bugs - which relate to  
building/compiling perl with new system utilities/libraries have  
either to be documented or fixed (whenever p5p gets aware of themm).    
(where that documentation should be is another question - but let's  
leave that in the middle for now)

In this case there was a good bug report.

Perl was build but it had no signal support.
Justin dig further and found that the problem was an update of  
coreutils (maybe after spending hours looking after it - maybe not).

Having a perl without signal support can (obviously) break a program  
that uses them which resutls expected results.

So basically, they have a program on machine A that works with 5.6.2  
and one on machine B that does not work with 5.6.2.

Tracing it all the way back to the coreutils that are different  
doesn't look like an easy/fast task.

The way I see it:

The result if not supported/not documented:

Someone that decides not to upgrade perl - because he/she is unaware  
on how a new version will behave on an old program - but does upgrade  
the system (say via a new server install) will loose (a lot of) time  
trying to find what the problem is and would have been better of  
upgrading perl and planning enough time to full test (or if nessesary  
rewrite) the old program.

The result if documented:

Hopefully that same person will look at the 'documentation'/bug  
reports and will see what the problem is and can apply a patch  
themself - and then rebuild perl.

This same documentation can also motivate some to upgrade perl and no  
longer stick with 5.6. (Since it's a list with potential problems with  
5.6.* when installing it on a - new - system)

The result if supported:

Lots of extra work for the pumpking - since not only coreutils suffer  
from this.
perl v5.6.2 comes - for example - with DB_File 1.806, but support for  
Berkeley DB 4.4 only came with 1.813.

I'm in favor of documenting it.

Kind regards,


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