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CPAN river 3000: baseline for 5.29 development cycle

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James E Keenan
June 28, 2018 18:46
CPAN river 3000: baseline for 5.29 development cycle
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You can find data from a test run of the "CPAN-river-top-3000" against
perl-5.29.0 here:

The file above presents the data in the same format which I used during 
the 5.27 development cycle for the "CPAN-river-top-1000".  Since 5.29.0 
is the first release in this dev cycle, there are no month-to-month 
comparisons yet.  Rather, this data will serve as a baseline for the 
current dev cycle.

The following items should be noted:

* The number of CPAN modules selected for attempted build against the 
dev release has been increased from 1000 to 3000.  We hope that this 
will provide a more thorough basis for an assessment of the impact of 
blead on CPAN.

* The analysis is being conducted on FreeBSD rather than Linux.

$ uname -a
FreeBSD perl-reporter-01 11.1-RELEASE FreeBSD 11.1-RELEASE #0 r321309: 
Fri Jul 21 02:08:28 UTC 2017  amd64

$ clang --version
FreeBSD clang version 4.0.0 (tags/RELEASE_400/final 297347) (based on 
LLVM 4.0.0)
Target: x86_64-unknown-freebsd11.1
Thread model: posix
InstalledDir: /usr/bin

By doing so, we hope to avoid a monoculture of operating systems and 
call attention to the fact that the impact of blead on CPAN can differ 
across platforms.

* The list of modules selected is curated so that the automated 
test-against-dev program can run smoothly over its more-than-six-hours 
length.  That means excluding modules that require interactive 
configuration, modules that make excessive demands with respect to 
external prerequisites, modules that require too much network access, 
modules that are subject to timeouts, and so forth.

* On the other hand, the list of modules selected has not been filtered 
to exclude modules which, nothwithstanding the fact that other CPAN 
distributions depend on them, have been failing tests for years.

* The test-against-dev process is built on top of Miyagawa's 'cpanm' and 
Breno G. de Oliveira's CPAN library App::cpanminus::reporter.  It 
therefore benefits from the strengths, and suffers from the flaws, of 
those two excellent libraries.  In particular, if distribution XYZ has a 
dependency on distribution ABC and if, earlier in the process, ABC has 
failed, the test-against-dev process will steer clear of attempting to 
fully test XYZ and will fail to write a report for it.  So some modules 
will "not be reached" and will not show up in the output data until such 
time as their upstream dependencies are fixed.

If you would like further information about this project or to help it 
along, please contact me off-list.


This project benefited from discussion at the Perl 5 Core Hackathon held 
in Amsterdam in October 2017, so thanks to participants in that event 
and to the organizations which sponsored it.

This project also benefits from the generous donation of a server by the 
New York City BSD Users Group and the system administration expertise of 
Mark Saad and George Rosamond.

This project also benefitted from assistance in reviewing test failure 
reports by three members of Philadelphia Perlmongers:  John Karr, Walt 
Mankowski and Thomas McKernan.

This project also benefits from the system administration expertise of 
Andrew Villano of New York Perlmongers.


See my presentation at the north American Perl Conference held in Salt 
Lake City this month:

Thank you very much.
Jim Keenan

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