[Bioperl-l] min. perl ver. for next release, was Bioperl tests

Sendu Bala bix at sendu.me.uk
Tue Sep 5 15:45:34 UTC 2006

Hilmar Lapp wrote:
> On Sep 3, 2006, at 10:31 AM, Chris Fields wrote:
>> perl v. 5.8 has been out since late 2002, so I think it's feasible.
> Just a note - it really doesn't matter at all how long these versions  
> have been available. What you need to know from people is how many  
> are still on versions prior to the one you want to make a requirement.
> For those who are it is unlikely that they are because they enjoy  
> running an ages old version of perl. More likely, the sysadmin is  
> unwilling or cannot upgrade perl, e.g. due to side effects. Bioperl  
> requiring a higher version will not change this.

But there may also be lots of people who just never had any reason to 

> By requiring a higher version you are dropping support for these  
> people

Even if no module in Bioperl required the latest Perl to function, to 
what extent do we support people on older Perls anyway?

How can we claim the latest version of Bioperl is compatible with 5.005 
(or whatever), when few (none?) of the developers test the code fully on 
earlier versions of Perl? How do we properly support something we don't use?

Anyway, support for older version of Perl shouldn't be dropped 'just 
because', but perhaps only when something critical can no longer be done 
at all under old Perls.

For those that dislike all the backward-compatibility cruft necessary, 
one would suppose that the version of Bioperl released for Perl 6 would 
be a fresh, clean start.

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