Messed up Perl
brad at pixilla.com
Mon Oct 4 21:17:17 PDT 2010
On Oct 4, 2010, at 8:40 PM, Hal Vaughan wrote:
> First: I don't write diplomatically, so don't take this as personal
> or as me being angry. I just tend to be abrupt.
> On Oct 4, 2010, at 3:30 PM, Daniel J. Luke wrote:
>> On Oct 4, 2010, at 3:21 PM, Hal Vaughan wrote:
>>>> It's entirely reasonable to assume that
>>>> someone who has installed MacPorts wants MacPorts programs to be
>>>> in their $PATH.
>>> You've missed a major point: These programs are OVERRIDING what's
>>> already there. That's my objection.
>> no, they're not.
>> Those programs are still there.
> If I type "cpan" and get the MacPorts version over the OS X one,
> then, yes, it's being overridden. The programs may still be there,
> but they're overridden. If MacPorts changes my system so the
> MacPorts version comes before the default for that system, it's
> overriding it.
>>>> If you want to change *where* it is in your $PATH, then
>>>> edit the PATH= line in ~/.profile.
>>> Yes, I'll be doing that. My issue there is that MacPorts PREPENDS
>>> their paths to PATH, instead of APPENDING them, making one use
>>> MacPorts programs by default, OVER OS X programs that were already
>>> there and doing just what I wanted them to do.
>> ... your issue is that MacPorts didn't do what you want
> My issue is that MacPorts AUTOMATICALLY did something I didn't want
> it to do. Again, if it had put the system PATH first, then its own,
> that would be different. If there is a default on a system, then if
> that default is changed, it should be made clear, "DEFAULTS ARE
> CHANGED!" If there's a warning that PATH is changed, if that change
> alters the defaults, it's only appropriate to say so.
>> Historically, we have done three different things with PATH:
>> 1. Nothing (my preferred solution)
>> - This results in large numbers of "I installed this with MacPorts
>> and I can't use it" emails to the mailing list
>> 2. Append to the PATH
>> - This results in large numbers of "Why isn't the MacPorts _foo_ I
>> installed running instead of the system one" emails to the mailing
>> 3. Prepend to PATH
>> - This results in a few very angry rants from people who are
>> confused about what is happening (and usually it seems to be people
>> running perl who don't realize that there's a difference between /
>> usr/bin/perl and /opt/local/bin/perl and associated modules).
>> Prepend to PATH seems to enable behavior that most of our users
>> expect - and it's easy enough for those who want other behavior to
>> change their own path.
>> If you have a better solution, I'm sure we're happy to hear it.
> How about two extra scripts and during the install explain the
> difference. You don't have to use strongly technical jargon at
> first. You can say, "You have 3 choices: 1) Run this script
> whenever you want to use MacPorts programs, or 2) Have this
> automatically set up so MacPorts programs are run easily and have
> preference over OS X programs, or 3) Have this automatically set so
> OS X programs are given priority, but MacPorts programs will still
> run, or 4) Read more technical information before making your
> choices. Which is your preference?"
> Considering that most users will have some degree of technical
> experience, trusting them to make a choice on their own system seems
> a reasonable choice. I'm curious if that possibility has been
>>> If I run cpan, without prefacing it with "/usr/bin/", I should be
>>> able to count on it being the default executable, not one that has
>>> been doctored.
>> It's not a 'doctored' one, it's just that your PATH isn't what you
>> expect, and you didn't think to look at your PATH or do 'which
>> cpan' or 'which perl' when things didn't work the way you expected.
> "your PATH isn't what you expect..."
> That sums it up. Why SHOULD I look at PATH or run "which cpan"
> UNTIL or UNLESS I have behavior from my system that isn't what one
> could reasonably expect? Here's an example: Tonight is Monday, so
> I'll put the garbage on the curb along with my recycling because
> they pick it up on Tuesday. That's the default and the expected
> behavior. Why should I check the city's website on that every
> Monday when they have stated that's how they work previously?
> There's no reason I'd check every week to see if they're still
> picking up trash in my area on Tuesday.
> Now, if they are changing, then they're going to announce it to the
> news stations and sent out mail. That's how they've done it in the
> past. So if there are no announcements made and I've received
> nothing in the mail, or what I did receive looked like junk mail and
> not like something from the city, and I have a full trash can
> stuffed with smelly old food because I cleaned out my refrigerator
> earlier today, and it sits there all day and I later find, at the
> end of the day, I have to deal with that smelly stuff all week
> because NOW they're picking up on Monday and I missed it and there
> was no announcement telling me the defaults and expected behaviors
> have changed, I'm going to be ticked off -- and I have a right to be
> ticked off, since the rug was pulled out from under me.
> It's a parallel and not all details work, but changing the default
> behavior without warning is a bit of an ambush to many people.
> And, on that note, I'll say that when I setup MacPorts this time
> (after a few failed attempts because it never installed Python right
> if I tried installing packages that depend on it), I installed
> Python, which got me Python and dependencies. Then I installed KDE,
> then Amarok and a few other programs. In each case, I got a fair
> amount of warnings from packages about, "Do this or do that." Well,
> with all the packages that were installed, many of those warnings
> scrolled off the screen into oblivion. So I admit it's possible I
> got a warning, but since I was not at my computer for the 12+ hours
> it took to install all the packages, I can't be sure. I know it
> sounds like I'm being snarky (sorry, I don't do subtle or diplomatic
> well and tend to be to the point), but it'd be great if port could
> keep a list of warnings and actions the user needs to take and
> report them all at the end of the install as well. Just piping them
> to a temp file as well as putting them on the console c
> ould do that. Then it'd be much easier to be sure one gets all the
> needed warnings.
>>> As best I can remember, at no place, when installing anything, did
>>> MacPorts warn me, "Hey, guy, we're usurping your defaults by
>>> putting our path BEFORE yours, so you'll always run our stuff over
>>> the defaults now."
>> I haven't installed from the .dmg installer in a long time, but it
>> should probably mention this. It would be super-awesome if you
>> would contribute to the community of volunteers who make MacPorts
>> happen if you could submit bug reports like this last sentence to
>> our bug tracker (and even better if you feel motivated enough to
>> figure out how to fix the problem and submit the fix as well).
> I don't mind submitting bug reports, but I do want to know, openly
> and honestly, how they're handled. I am essentially retired now
> (but found a way to do very well if I spend a few months returning
> to programming). I ran my own business based on my own software and
> did well with it. (The first time I published a program for my
> clients was the first time I had ever written a program for others
> to use -- in 18 months there were less than 6 bug reports!) I use
> FOSS and support FOSS and have even written or contributed to some
> FOSS programs (one was IzPack, an installer in Java, and one is for
> LinuxICE, where I wrote a controller to control an HD radio through
> a serial port in Linux). While there are languages I'm clueless in
> and I'm self taught, I can deal with programming.
> But I've had bad experiences with some FOSS projects when I filed
> bug reports. I've gotten things like, "It's a feature, not a
> bug" (when I could demonstrate why it was NOT a feature) and had
> some other bad experiences when reporting bugs on FOSS programs.
> Because of that, I've been slow to file other bug reports. I can
> give technical descriptions and help with bug reports and feature
> requests, but it helps to know if a project and the people in it
> really do want those reports and don't want to just close them out
> in a hurry or rationalize them away.
Hal, so many words for a small issue. Decisions were made with the
intent of serving the most people the way they expected to be served.
There are but a handful of people trying to serve you here. Either
contribute or not, up to you, but please just fix your PATH the way
you like and let us move on.
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