web at umich
Jun 29, 2011, 5:39 AM
Post #7 of 13
According to Fred Moyer <fred [at] redhotpenguin> on Tue, 06/28/11 at 16:50:
Re: mod_perl-1.31 compilation with perl 5.14.1 fails
[In reply to]
> > Some in this thread :
> > http://www.gossamer-threads.com/lists/modperl/modperl/103167
> The problem here didn't appear to be 5.14 compatibility, more an issue
> of an inexperienced user trying to setup the latest version of
> httpd/perl/mod_perl. No specific 5.14 incompatibilities were
I am a bit surprised by your summary of my problem. I have been a
user of FreeBSD since 1996 and have found the FreeBSD ports system
to be an excellent resource and advantage to the UNIX world.
The way I insure my systems are relatively free of security risks is
to keep my operating system up-to-date and my applications rebuilt
when security issues are disseminated.
> It is always a good idea to use the tested and packaged versions of
> mod_perl/httpd that come with your operating system if you are looking
> to deploy a production application and don't have much experience with
> compiling from source.
Note that I most certainly am using/building the apache2 and mod_perl2
that "come" with my operating system. In fact, I would be had pressed
to consider doing otherwise.
While I am not by any measure an expert on mod_perl (1 or 2), a recent
well respected application required me to build apache2 and mod_perl2
in order to run that Perl application. And when I say "build" here, I
mean "build from source" using the FreeBSD ports system. Prior to my
June 9th upgrade of both my operating system and all my ports (all the
user-land applications), I had been running apache2 (2.1.7) along with
mod_perl2 (2.0.4) successfully for months. Note that all these ports
were built from up-to-date source per the excellent FreeBSD ports system
meta-structure, ditto the FreeBSD 8.2-STABLE operating system.
I had followed the README that came with this Perl web application
(which was not in the ports tree, but came as a tar file) to configure
apache2 and mod_perl2. Everything was fine and ran smoothly. Then I
did the June 9th upgrade, and after the build of almost all my ports
was complete, I attempted to launch apache2. This failed. :-(
Since I got a strange error from apachectl(8) I immediately suspected
the newer versions of either apache2 (2.1.9) or mod_perl2 (2.0.5). I
had also upgraded to Perl 5.14 from the prior 5.12.3 version I had
been running up until June 9th, but I didn't suspect Perl 5.14 until
When I asked the developers of the Perl application about this error,
they were clueless. I was led to suspect something in their code base
after running down several suggestions both local and from various
mailing lists. When the dust settled, and since I have neither the
time nor the expertise to debug the issue with any of these large
packages (apache2, mod_perl2, Perl, this Perl web application), I made
the reluctant decision to completely redo my June 9th upgrade but this
time moving back to Perl 5.12.3 to see if that one change would help.
As I have reported to those venues attempting to assist me, this
upgrade was successful. Note that the only thing that changed in this
upgrade was the version of Perl. The apache2, mod_perl2 and the Perl
web application were identical to the June 9th upgrade. In fact, not
one thing had changed with the Perl web application since March 2011.
The way the FreeBSD ports system operates, one can use pre-built
binaries, or one can build ports from source, or a mixture of both.
I always (re-)build from source (including the operating system),
even when this may seen unnecessary. I do this infrequently enough
that the burden is acceptable, but I do it often enough to ensure my
system has no known security risks. However, I did not plan to do
two ground-up rebuilds within a two week period!
This experience (and some issues I had with one other FreeBSD port)
made me suspect Perl 5.14 (or perhaps, the side effects in other
code bases that use Perl caused by changes found in Perl 5.14). It
may take several months for all the affected software packages to
migrate to being compatible with Perl 5.14 but I am happy to remain
at Perl 5.12.3 for the foreseeable future since everything works.
William Bulley Email: web [at] umich
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