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Anthill to manage perl installations

by jpross81 (Initiate)
on Feb 05, 2013 at 16:19 UTC ( #1017213=perlquestion: print w/replies, xml ) Need Help??

jpross81 has asked for the wisdom of the Perl Monks concerning the following question:

Hi, I have been given the task of determining how to manage a perl installation between dev, sit, and prod machines. I have searched on here and google for information about perl installation management and looked at a couple different slideshows on slideshare of how others have tackled the issue, but cannot find anything on using Anthill.

I am curious how you as perl experts and admins who have done this before accomplished this task using Anthill where you build the code one time and then deploy to each environment from that build. How do you handle module consistency between the environments without having to rebuild on the destination machine or using CPAN for the installation?

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Re: Anthill to manage perl installations
by blue_cowdawg (Monsignor) on Feb 05, 2013 at 17:06 UTC
        I have been given the task of determining how to manage a perl installation between dev, sit, and prod machines.

    My condolences... been there done that. I've no experience with Anthill so I can't comment there.

    The official answer is: "It depends." The dependencies here are (and not limited to)

    • Are you supporting Perl on more than one platform? If you have all the same platform you have one leg up on the problem set. If not (my case) then it gets complicated
    • How often do you need to update you instsllations?
    • What is (are) your platform(s)?

    I'll tell a quick "war story" here as a way of illustrating one way of accomplishing this in a worst case scenario BUT with some handy tools that helped out a bit.

    I used to be in charge of being the Perl "librarian" for a very large financial firm on a global scale. The platforms I supported ran the gamut of SunOS 4.x to Solaris 5.[2-6] and Linux Redhat, Debian and Suse. The good news was we used AFS (Andrew File System) with multiple replica nodes around the globe. Perl itself was not installed on a system at build time but a symbolic link for Perl and its friends and pieces were installed instead pointing to the right place in AFS.

    We had a "build farm" with a battery of scripts that would build and install a CPAN module into AFS and then release to AFS after a successful build and test. There was a home grown database that kept a list of modules that had been "blessed" to be provided for distribution.

    Not only did we have to support a wide variety of platforms, but due to developer/app support team concerns we supported multiple versions of Perl including Perl4 (yuck!!) and which Perl a system got was driven by the host build process.

    All this was made possible by a philosophy of not installing anything on a host's local hard drive except the OS itself where practical.

    I didn't always agree with all of this but it worked.

    Another way I'd consider for solving this is setting up your own packaging scheme and setting up a process for installation and update of your own Perl package which would include the modules you want to distribute in your environment.


    Peter L. Berghold -- Unix Professional
    Peter -at- Berghold -dot- Net; AOL IM redcowdawg Yahoo IM: blue_cowdawg
Re: Anthill to manage perl installations
by Anonymous Monk on Feb 05, 2013 at 18:05 UTC
    What is "Anthill"?

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