but ActiveState's build status information is virtually useless
in reply to Getting Fed Up with ActiveState
I pretty much agree with all you have written - but the page to which the above quote linked is (imo) more of an indictment on perl's default "make test" output, than anything else.
As for the failure message that you get for Darwin, that is indeed very odd. There may be others here that can explain it - I certainly cannot. You could always seek an explanation by posting to ActiveState's PPM mailing list, though there's no guarantee that will produce a satisfactory answer. For my part, I'm always prepared to accept that something very weird will happen when I see things like Warning: prerequisite Test::More 0.6 not found. We have 0.54