[erlang-questions] Building, Packaging and Installing

Tristan Sloughter <>
Sat May 5 20:20:34 CEST 2012


Tuncer's idea of Hackage for Erlang is interesting. And if it were possible
to move something like Hackage to do for Erlang what it does for Haskell,
instead of writing from scratch, that could be even better.

Tristan

On Fri, May 4, 2012 at 2:32 AM, Tim Watson <> wrote:

> Is Columbo somehow different from what rebar already does in this space?
>
>
>
> On 4 May 2012, at 03:06, Tristan Sloughter <>
> wrote:
>
> Ah yes, I briefly looked at colombo when you mentioned it on the erlware
> list. I'll give that a deeper look to see how much of what I need is
> covered by it and possibly simply start extending it.
>
> Tristan
>
> On Thu, May 3, 2012 at 4:52 PM, Torben Hoffmann <>wrote:
>
>> That actually sounds like a good step forward - it almost, but only
>> almost makes me sad that I have created my own dependency management tool
>> called colombo (alpha vers. is on github/lehoff).
>>
>> I haven't spent much time on it, but it can fetch apps from git repos as
>> well as their dependencies,  one can specify a tag or a branch to check
>> out, a simple build can be done and you can get a version tagged version
>> installed in the subdir lib of the dir where you you colombo (vers is taken
>> from the app file or a default is choosen).
>>
>> very much alpha quality, but it shows that small dedicated tools aren't
>> that hard to create for the Erlang eco system.
>>
>> I will continue improving colombo since it helps me solve my own problem,
>> but it would be nice to have "real" users as well that could help form the
>> functionality of the tool. Or tools since I might already have added too
>> much functionality to colombo.
>>
>> Cheers,
>> Torben
>>
>> Sent from my iPad
>>
>> On 03/05/2012, at 15.30, Tristan Sloughter <>
>> wrote:
>>
>> I feel like someone said Travis-CI wasn't the answer... But I am now
>> having the thought it is, at least to make something I'd like to see
>> without me having to do it.
>>
>> The question is would the community be interested in this if
>> I implement it. Here is what I'm talking about:
>>
>> 1) A github hook that informs X that an update to a branch or tag is
>> pushed.
>> 2) This hook does not only ensure tests pass but also that the version
>> numbers are correct. If you tag a project as 0.1.0 and the .app file has
>> {vsn, 0.1.0} it fails
>> 3) Assuming these criteria are met the agner repo for the project is
>> either updated or created. Instead of @master it would use a piece of the
>> git hash for the branch pointer (using a moving target -- a branch name --
>> as the version of an app doesn't make sense), for a tag it would use the
>> tag name.
>>
>> Now, this is only part of the large solution people want, and I agree
>> with them we should do.
>>
>> But, I think it is a start and something that can be done in small enough
>> amount of effort to be done soon.
>>
>> Tristan
>>
>> On Wed, May 2, 2012 at 7:18 PM, Tim Watson <>wrote:
>>
>>> On 02/05/2012 21:13, Ciprian Dorin Craciun wrote:
>>>
>>>> On Wed, May 2, 2012 at 11:03 PMv, Tim Watson<**com<>>
>>>>  wrote:
>>>
>>>  Eric Merit and I have had some lengthy discussions about this on the
>>>>> Erlware mailing list and have some ideas that I think are pretty solid.
>>>>>
>>>>     I'm glad to hear this. (I'll give it a look.)
>>>>
>>> Cool thanks - please do leave any feedback you feel is relevant.
>>>
>>>  The thing is though, you don't just need tools - you also need people
>>>>> to package their stuff up using the tools.
>>>>>
>>>>     I agree about this. In fact I think currently there are a lot of
>>>> tools with diverging solutions.
>>>>
>>>>     Also I don't think that one "blessed" tool would be the final
>>>> answer. I would have taken a somehow different road, similar maybe to
>>>> how Go is going (although they do have the "one" tool): i.e. strict
>>>> conventions.
>>>>
>>> Yes I agree that '1 tool to rule them all' isn't going to work. Eric and
>>> I have discussed building a unix-y pipeline of tools to deal with
>>> local/remote package and repository management, dependency resolution,
>>> installing and/or generating a code path (or some other structure) for
>>> bootstrapping either ERL_LIBS or a call to code:path, etc.
>>>
>>> The assumption we have is that various parts can be dealt with be
>>> different tools providing they respect the APIs, so you can build with
>>> rebar or sinan or make or whatever. We are also planning on using reltool
>>> (or some alternative/replica of sorts) to deal with the packaging bits, as
>>> well as a set of tools for publication, code/package signing and the like.
>>>
>>> We would also like to support different release types (e.g., embedded
>>> vs. non), distinguish between applications and library applications and so
>>> on.
>>>
>>>
>>>>     What do I mean is this:
>>>>     a) it would be nice to have a standardized way to specify "extra"
>>>> options to compile an Erlang module. (We have the module attributes
>>>> that we could use.) (the same for C sources);
>>>>     b) we already have a standard project layout; (i.e. `./src`,
>>>> `./include`, etc.)
>>>>     c) we already have a standard project dependencies (i.e. the `app`
>>>> file);
>>>>
>>>>     All we need to do is be consistent in this convention, and then
>>>> all the various build and packaging systems could adapt.
>>>>
>>> Packaging wise, I don't see how any of this really helps so much,
>>> although I completely agree that sticking to this consistent layout is a
>>> good thing.
>>>
>>> Using the app file for dependencies is fine at runtime - I do this in
>>> https://github.com/hyperthunk/**appstart<https://github.com/hyperthunk/appstart>- but if you're connecting to a (possibly remote) artefact repository and
>>> fetching stuff, then you need to specify the publisher/signer (because 2
>>> OTP applications could be written with the same name, and of course with
>>> FOSS project forking this happens all the time), the application name, and
>>> the version. You can't whack all of that into your .app file without
>>> breaking various things.
>>>
>>>
>>>
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