On Fri, Jun 29, 2001 at 06:51:33PM -0500, Elaine -HFB- Ashton wrote:
> *>That's their fault.  Find a better distribution.
> There are a lot of Solaris 8 users out there and to have a broken OEM Perl
> is not optimal. That response would not be well received.

If <insert vendor name here> distributes a broken Perl with <insert OS
name here>, what are we to do about it?

> Well, Sun has worked with other major OS vendors to make Java work
> properly so I don't know what the issues are behind Linux and *BSD not
> doing the same.
<wonderful reasons why Sun only supports certain OS's snipped>

That's all lovely, I still don't have a recent version of Java on my
machine.  I don't expect this situation to really be fixed anytime

> *>As a Solaris gal, this might all seem perfectly sensible.  Myself, I'm
> *>doubly screwed running Linux (which is not Windows or Solaris) on a
> *>PowerPC (which is not Intel or Sparc).  Sun might have perfectly valid
> *>business reasons for concentrating on Solaris and Windows, but in the
> *>end it still means I'm screwed.
> There are platforms which are also difficult to install Perl though it has
> gotten better over the years. I remember when I first installed or rather
> tried to install perl5 on Solaris when it first came out....it was a PITA
> to say the least. 
> P5P was conceived for just this task to make Perl install and run on a
> wide variety of platforms since, at the time, the number was few.
> Nothing installs perfectly on every OS and runs perfectly as well. 
> It such a thing exists, I'll buy stock in the company right now :)

Yeah, but Perl does an amazing job of trying.  About the only thing I
can think that's been so well ported is maybe something like gcc, vi
or make.  It runs on the Amiga!  It supports EBCDIC for god's sake!

I think the key difference here is that p5p is committed to trying
like hell to get Perl working on pretty much everything, while Sun is
only doing the ones it thinks are important and leaving the rest to
independent porting operations it gives its blessing, and source code,
to (like Blackdown).

Yes, you still need a White Knight for your OS, yes things take time
to firm up, yes its not perfect, but we're trying and succeeding.  Sun
isn't even trying.  

Java's been around long enough and sure as hell has had enough
resources poured into it.  If they really wanted Java to be truely
cross-platform, they'd have done it by now.  They don't care.  That's
fine as a business, but like I said, whatever the reason the end-users
are still fucked.

> *>Given that Sun charges $200 per incident for a two day response time
> *>($1600 for four hour reponse) this is not something most people can
> *>afford.  Expensive, commercial support, while it is nice for those who
> *>can afford it, is not a general solution.
> When you have web sties that loose millions of dollars per hour of down
> time it's not an option not to have support. Sun is a business, Perl is
> not. People don't answer pagers at 4am for free :)

You misread.  Commercial support is entirely necessary and justifiable
in your case and many others.  It must exist.  However, you can't hold
it up as a good general solution.

Advocating, "When I had a problem, Sun fixed it right away
<mumble>because I pay them lots of money</mumble>" is cheating.  Take
any technology, apply lots of money, and it will work wonderfully.

> It would be neat to have 'make solaris-dist' or something like that
> for most of the major platforms.
> NAPC sounds cool but I don't know enough about it to say whether or not it
> will be Enterprise level.

Given that "Enterprise" has pretty much no meaning anymore, I'd say
yes. :)

Seriously though, NAPC (if it works) is exactly the sort of packaging
tool you're looking for.  Since NAPC will produce, essentially, a
"binary" package, you can just translate that into a solaris package.

Anyhow, I think we've beaten this topic to death.  Point is, Perl's
installation isn't any worse than Java and possibly better.


Michael G. Schwern   <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>    http://www.pobox.com/~schwern/
Perl6 Quality Assurance     <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>       Kwalitee Is Job One
Schwern Unit:  a positive but insignificant quantity

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