perl and ports

Donald J. O'Neill donaldj1066 at
Mon Jan 24 21:15:48 PST 2005

On Monday 24 January 2005 09:25 pm, Kris Kennaway wrote:
> On Mon, Jan 24, 2005 at 09:20:16PM -0600, Donald J. O'Neill wrote:
> > On Monday 24 January 2005 06:54 pm, Kris Kennaway wrote:
> > > On Tue, Jan 25, 2005 at 01:42:24AM +0100, Gert Cuykens wrote:
> > > > Do we still need perl to make use of ports
> > > >
> > > > Just asking because it bugs me. I never use it and it just
> > > > takes up space and it is a security risc :P I want it gone :)
> > >
> > > Only if you want to do certain things like 'make index', but not
> > > for general use (this has been the case for years).
> > >
> > > Kris
> >
> > And if you want to install packages using the ports tree.
> Eh?
> > depend on installing packages only, ok. Of course, you have to wait
> > for them to be built.
> >
> > I just ran pkg_info -R perl-5.8.5, too many to count by hand.
> Well, yeah, but that's because you installed perl 5.8.5 or something
> that depends on it.  If you use 4.x most such ports will be happy
> with the base system version of perl, and if you don't use 4.x then
> ports that don't require perl won't install it.

Yes, and that's my point Kris. Of the 537 ports that are installed on my 
system, 318 of them require (have a dependency) perl-5.8.5 to run. What 
about others that require it to build. So, if Gert, who is running 
FSBD5.3 on an amd64 system and has been building ports and using 
portupgrade, removes perl-5.8.5 (does a forced removal) because he 
can't see that it's used all over the place and thinks of it as a 
security issue because of earlier perl versions. He's going to have a 
big problem on his hands the first time he tries to use portupgrade and 
finds a lot of decencies missing in his package database, and running 
pkgdb -F is going to fix them.

I seem to also remember, at one time, having to do 'pkg_add -r cvsup' 
and perl-5.8.5 was installed with it.

> Kris

It seems to me that the perl-5.8.5 is installed when FreeBSD 5.3 

From ports/UPDATING
  AFFECTS: 5.2-CURRENT20040204:
  AFFECTS: 5.2-CURRENT users who started with a 5.2-RELEASE or older.
  AUTHOR: obrien at

  Change the default version of perl to 5.8. users who started with a 
5.2-RELEASE or older.
  AUTHOR: obrien at

  Change the default version of perl to 5.8.

  AFFECTS: users of lang/perl5.8
  AUTHOR: tobez at, mat at, marcus at

  lang/perl5.8 has been updated to 5.8.5. you should update everything
  depending on perl, that is:
    * first, upgrade your perl5.8 installation.
    * run "use.perl port", so that the system knows you have 5.8.5.
    * now, run some magic incantations to upgrade all ports depending on 
      that is run something like :
      portupgrade -f `(pkg_info -R perl-5.8.5 |tail +4; \
        find /usr/local/lib/perl5/site_perl/5.8.[124] -type f -print0 \
        | xargs -0 pkg_which -fv | sed -e '/: ?/d' -e 's/.*: //')|sort 
      This is likely to fail for a few ports, you'll have to upgrade 
      Please note, that this last step is, strictly speaking, not 
      if you are upgrading from 5.8.4.  But it is cleaner to do so 

It seems to me, removing perl, is not a good idea.

Donald J. O'Neill
donaldj1066 at

I'm not totally useless,
I can be used as a bad example.

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