Problems with help2man and perl during Gnome upgrade

Fernan Aguero fernan at
Wed Mar 16 05:07:06 PST 2005

+----[ Jean-Baptiste Quenot <jb.quenot at> (16.Mar.2005 07:55):
| Hello,
| First, thank you very much for  the efforts of bringing the latest
| Gnome to FreeBSD.
| Before the upgrade, I had two perl dists installed, namely 5.6 and
| 5.8.   I discovered  that  after trying  to run,
| which  failed  at  help2man, depending  on  p5-Locale-gettext  not
| installed in the perl dist used by this port.


I know it is perhaps possible to have different versions of
perl installed. However, if you're using the ports system to
install things (i.e. gnome), then perhaps it is a problem,
since the perl modules are looked for and installed in the
path specified in SITE_PERL, wich according to
is ${LOCALBASE}/lib/perl5/site_perl/${PERL_VER}

Do you need to use both 5.6 and 5.8? Or perhaps your
intention was to upgrade to 5.8 but still got some modules
installed under the xxx/site_perl/5.6.x/ directory?

If this is the case, the recommended procedure to update
your perl and all of the modules, is the one shown in
/usr/ports/UPDATING, read the entry for 20050201

| The problem with help2man is that its configure script is designed
| to call  "perl" or  "perl5" directly,  maybe the  configure script
| could be patched with the real perl given by
| I find  it also surprising to  be able to have  several perl dists
| installed.  I haven't come across a conflict, ever!

I, as I believe most other FreeBSD 4.x users also have two
perl dists installed. One comes with the base system
(5.005). The other is the one that most of us install from

BUT, once you install perl from ports you MUST run the 
use.perl script to adjust symlinks and other necessary
things so that only ONE perl is seen and used.
| I  decided to  deinstall  the  old 5.6  perl,  but help2man  still
| couldn't install, because  the symlinks to the  perl executable in
| /usr/bin were removed when deinstalling perl 5.6.
| Soooo!   I  tried  to  place  the  links  myself,  but  help2man's
| configure complained that  pod2man was missing.  So  I removed the
| broken perl 5.8, and pod2man reappeared.  Then, help2man was happy
| installing.

I believe you should take some time to clean your installed
perl dists and associated modules. 

| Besides that and a couple of other failures, I can now happily run
| Gnome 2.10.  Thank you!

Hope this helps,


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