[erlang-questions] Good reason for not using "releases"?

Edwin Fine erlang-questions_efine@REDACTED
Tue Oct 21 00:00:22 CEST 2008

On Mon, Oct 20, 2008 at 4:05 PM, Kevin <q2h46uw02@REDACTED> wrote:

> Hello, I'm building my first erlang server program, and I've worked my way
> up from modules, to gen_server and gen_fsm, to supervisor, to application
> behavior.
> If this application is going to run on a linux host, and boot using a linux
> init script, does it make sense to take it to the next level of "release",
> or is that just more complication I don't need to deal with.

Yes, because you will surely upgrade the code at some point (new features,
bug fixes) and it's a pain to do this by hand or even using scripts. I
suggest taking a look at some open source Erlang-specific software that
allows you to build and distribute (install) your Erlang applications
relatively painlessly. The builder component is called Sinan (
http://code.google.com/p/sinan/); the distribution/installation component is
called Faxien (http://code.google.com/p/faxien/). I use these for the job
and although there are some minor imperfections, I would never go back to
the "old way".

Also take a look at the Faxien/Sinan cookbook at
http://myfcci.com/yab/2008/09/11/my-faxiensinan-cookbook/ to get started
(disclosure: I wrote the cookbook, but I have no vested interest in Sinan or
Faxien other than using it for my work).

I don't ever anticipate the need for hotswapping of code. The users will
> have no issues with just restarting the entire thing just like all the other
> stuff running from init scripts, and they might find hotswapping, or
> whatever fancy stuff releases offers, more work than appreciated.

How would they like to upgrade to the latest release just by typing in "$
faxien upgrade-release kevins_stuff" and then restart the app?

> I also don't anticipate this application sharing an running erlang system
> with any other erlang applications.
> Thanks, especially if this is such an ignorant question.

No question is ignorant.

Hope this helps.
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