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Re: on changing perl's behavior

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B. Estrade
March 30, 2021 00:11
Re: on changing perl's behavior
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On 3/29/21 6:16 PM, Dominic Hargreaves wrote:
> On Mon, Mar 29, 2021 at 09:48:06AM -0500, B. Estrade wrote:
>> In additional to fostering (at a high level) tooling around distributing
>> Perl applications, has anyone taken a serious look at what's going on with
>> perl and linux/BSD distros?
>> * OpenBSD is the only one that keeps it base (that should tell you something
>> - good)
>> * FreeBSD took it out of base YEARS ago
>> * FreeBSD is the only freenix that supports more than one version of perl (4
>> at least count) and has a means to have them all installed at once; even if
>> the /usr/local/bin/perl is symliked to only one at a time (they do the same
>> for python2,3 and ruby, etc)
>> * pkgsrc (NetBSD) supports a LARGE number of systems, yet provides only one
>> version of Perl (fairly up to day)
>> * Ubuntu - omg, the way it breaks up perl-doc, libperl-dev, etc, etc - not
>> good for Perl at all
>> * RH/Centos - idk even know any more, I think it breaks up the perl stuff
>> like Ubuntu but I have not checked
>> This is definitely going into the Perl advocacy realm, who among us is
>> "officially" in charge of nagging Canonical about the way it breaks up Perl?
>> Who was on the horn with FBSF when they ripped perl out of their base?  Is
>> anyone working with Strawberry Perl or wx-widgets? You want Perl apps on
>> Windows? There's your core team, and one of them might even be economically
>> viable.
> I'm not sure how this relates to the topic to hand, but... I'm one of the
> current co-maintainers of perl in Debian (and by extension Ubuntu). We
> enjoy a fruitful relation with the upstream perl community with the
> occasional upstream contribution and many more downstream contributions
> arising from issues we face (including helping to support older perls
> in our stable releases). I don't believe we have ever been nagged about
> the way that perl is split into different binary packages in Debian
> in the decade since I got involved from anyone involved in upstream
> perl development.
> Those splits are all there to support perl being smoothly installed as
> part of the base system (where there are strict size constraints, and
> strict "this must always work even the middle of upgrade" constraints)
> as well as to support perl running on a dozen different architectures,
> and to support various upgrade paths for XS modules. All if which is
> mostly invisible to the regular user who just wants to apt-get install perl
> and have it work.
> But you haven't explained what you find so offensive about this
> situation. Why is this not good for Perl?

I suppose this is fair given I broached the subject. I don't want to 
distract from the larger topic at hand. Although I must admit I am 
rather mentally exhausted from my latest spate of emails. :)

In this specific case, this happens to me, every time:

1. docker run -it ubuntu sh

[note: just checked /usr/bin/perl is there for both ubuntu:latest, 
debian:latest, and debian:stretch-slim 'out of box'; perldoc is not. 
alpine (just as another example requires the 'apk add perl' to start; 
but perldoc is there as expected after `perl` is installed; anyway...]

2. /me starts coding, oops! how do I use Getopts::Long again?
3. perldoc Getopts::Long
4. ubuntu: "boooomp! wrong gotta install perl-doc package" (how I take 
it, not what it actually says)
5. /me (head hits desk), whimpers something about why is so

But that's me. My goal is not to change your mind. It was just an 
example asking if anyone tracks these things - that I added a personal 
comment was actually out of line and wouldn't be part of any type of 
tracking document I would expect to see. So, apologies if I caused 

That said, I would love to see some sort of PSC steering document that 
simply tracked how linux distros, BSD, etc provided perl (minus personal 
comments) with a mind towards ensuring it be distributed as widely and 
completely as possible.

Thank you for providing me an opportunity to explain. And thank you for 
your hard work, don't think I don't appreciate it.


> Dominic

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