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Re: Which prerequisite packages should you have installed before building Perl on GNU/Linux?

by ambrus (Abbot)
on Oct 03, 2010 at 06:46 UTC ( #863153=note: print w/ replies, xml ) Need Help??


in reply to Which prerequisite packages should you have installed before building Perl on GNU/Linux?

Perl doesn't really need much of anything to compile. A Debian system with all the required and important packages (the ones the installer will install be default) plus the build-essential metapackage (which installs the libc headers, make, and some other things you won't need) is enough. That the INSTALL file in the perl source does not say much about the requirements (though it does now say you need a C89 compiler) is because there aren't many. If all you want to install is the perl core, you don't need libncurses or libreadline, for nothing in the core wants to use these. Certainly nothing like sqlite, gdbm, Tk is needed. (Update: a core module does use libz though if configure detects that you have it, so install the zlib1g-dev package.)

Later you might need some such packages if you want to install modules, for example Bundle::Cpan lets you use a readline prompt in the cpan shell, so you need libreadline for that. (But then, who wants that when you can just run the cpan shell in rlwrap? A program needs to embed readline only if it actually does something with it, such as defines custom tab completion.) In general, modules from CPAN should tell you about any extra requirements in their INSTALL or README files. For example, if you look at the README in the XML-LibXML distribution, it tells you that it needs the libxml2 library. Installing some dependencies can become complicated in a few cases because you have to do so recursively, but luckily you get useful error messages from which you can figure out what's missing.


Comment on Re: Which prerequisite packages should you have installed before building Perl on GNU/Linux?
Re^2: Which prerequisite packages should you have installed before building Perl on GNU/Linux?
by Anonymous Monk on Oct 04, 2010 at 02:16 UTC

    Thanks, ambrus.

    If all you want to install is the perl core, you don't need libncurses or libreadline, for nothing in the core wants to use these. Certainly nothing like sqlite, gdbm, Tk is needed.

    Well, I want Perl to utilize as many extensions as it can.

    When I build Python, it tries to tell me what parts it failed to find. I've had the experience with Python where I wanted to use some piece of it's std lib (say, sqlite) and then came to find out that I didn't have the sqlite-dev package installed when I built it so I had to rebuild. I was looking for a way to avoid this experience with Perl.

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