October 19, 2000

Building manifests, approaching deities

Making a trip down to DC tomorrow to visit the home office. Should be... interesting. Enough for now, more later.

Added some cool functionality to the package management program. Christian thought it was lame (not his words) that whenever you exported a package (to a .tar.gz dist file) it took all the files in the package directory. He said, why don't you use a MANIFEST file (just like perl modules) and the ExtUtils stuff for it?

Sure enough, ExtUtils::Manifest does exactly that -- creates MANIFEST files, reads them in and does checks (files in MANIFEST not in the fs, files in the fs not in MANIFEST) for you to ensure everything matches up. It even copies all the files into a separate directory of your choosing, making it easy to use something like Archive::Tar to create a distribution file (even on Win32 machines). How cool is that?

I did find a little annoyance about the module but was hesitant to send it to Perl demigod Andreas Koenig just because I figured he had already thought of it (being a demigod and all). I turned this over for a bit, not wanting to look foolish, and sent it anyway. One of the cool things about this community is that most people won't bite your ass off if you're trying to be helpful and do sufficient research and testing before bothering them. Even the demigods.

For today's excitement: the hard drive in the machine storing our CVS repository crashed. At first I didn't know what was wrong, the machine wasn't responding to cvs or ssh but it was sending back pings. I called up the office and asked someone to take a look at it. He called me back two minutes later and said, "Well, I have some bad news...", instantly giving me that bad feeling in the pit of your stomach that you have when you do a 'rm -rf' on something and realize that the prompt is taking way too long to return.

Fortunately, the partition with CVS was recoverable and we promptly put it on a machine with access to the backup system. That could have been a really painful lesson -- really dodged a bullet.

(Originally posted elsewhere)

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