Debian Weekly News - email

Subject: Experimental Perl 5.6 debs
From: Darren Stalder <>
Date: 18 Apr 2000 18:01:39 -0700


Put the following in your /etc/apt/sources.list to get the latest
Perl-5.6 debs.
deb ./
deb-src ./

Note that this will not make perl-5.6 your preferred Perl.  This would
probably be a bad idea since this Perl has not been thoroughly tested
with all the Debian software.  I've executed some tests that seem to
pass but don't blame me if Perl 5.6 makes your cat pregnant.

I imagine that you can figure out how to get these files using a
webserver or ftpserver as well.

Here is the changes file and the Todo list:
perl-5.6 (5.6.0-0.1) unstable; urgency=low

  * New upstream version.  New numbering system.
  * Note that there is currently no threading available with this
    version.  The 5.6 threading model (interpreter threads) isn't
    currently usable from user space.  5.005 threads can be built but only
    will be if there is a demand for it since perl-5.005 is available.

 -- Darren Stalder <>  Wed, 12 Apr 2000 01:12:45 -0700

Todo file for Debian 5.6

* Change the base.prerm to manipulate the Perl version correctly:
  The version currently looks like 5.6.0 everywhere except for when we
  print out $] when it comes out at 5.006.
  Solution: export yes from Perl instead of exporting the version from
* The alternative for Perl 5.6 is now wrong, it comes off as 56 which is
  significantly lower than 5005.
* We need to write our own alternatives switcher.  There are the
  following problems with the current solution:
  - Update alternatives is written in Perl so we have to go through
    contortions in the base.postinst to get it to work.
  - There are many files that need to be changed when a user wants to
    use a different Perl as the default.  Having a user change all of
    these isn't reasonable and having that many slave links caused bugs
    at one point in update-alternatives
  - There have been reports of update-alternatives becoming mysteriously
    set to manual.
  - Yet another thing that could go wrong (but that's true of
    update-alternatives as well).
  - Different UI for the user to deal with.
* Get patch for using shared with statically linked Perl.
* Check to see if it's alright to just have /usr/lib/perl/5.6 or if
  that's not specific enough.  (Default install is 5.6.0)
* Check and make sure that Perl is no longer spawning a shell when it
* @INC is now funky with duplicate directories in the path and
  $venderlib at the end of the search path rather than the beginning.
  Possibly re-institute the Debian patch to put /usr/lib/perl5 at the
  beginning of @INC.
* Re-implement the MM::Unix patch that doesn't include /lib or /usr/lib
  in -rpath/LD_RUN_PATH during link time.

Todo at somepoint (not needed for non-experimental release of 5.6)

* The files needed by the base disks should be generated automatically
  rather than written by hand.
* Build perl-\d+-doc in the binary-indep target.

- --
<> <> <> <>
Darren Stalder/2608 Second Ave, @282/Seattle, WA 98121-1212/USA/+1-800-921-4996
@ Sysadmin, webweaver, postmaster for hire. C/Perl/CGI/Pilot programmer/tutor @
@		     Make a little hot-tub in your soul.		      @

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This issue of Debian Weekly News was edited by Joey Hess.