[erlang-questions] Proposal: reinstate pre-built PLT for Dialyzer

Sean Cribbs sean@REDACTED
Thu Jan 16 19:15:46 CET 2014

Hi Erlangers,

Ages ago, OTP shipped with a pre-built PLT for dialyzer, which was removed
reasons forgotten by most of us (probably the time/cost of building it).
Nowadays, because dialyzer is much improved (parallelism!) and our
computers are faster and have more cores, a PLT for all of the standard
library might only take a few minutes to build.

We've been increasing our usage of dialyzer at Basho and I have felt that
it seems extremely wasteful and unnecessary to build a partial PLT of the
standard library for every single project, when that information only
changes across OTP releases. I feel the Erlang/OTP build process should
include building a PLT that encompasses the entire standard library. Aside
from the reduced cost of building PLTs for every different app, this may
encourage others to start using dialyzer on their projects.

I'm offering to do the work to make this happen, but I need a little
guidance on where to start. I've looked at the dialyzer Makefile from an
older release where the PLT was included, but I'm concerned the project
structure has changed enough that the rules there no longer apply. It seems
the dialyzer runtime itself might also need to be tweaked to automatically
include the prebuilt PLT.

Looking forward to hearing your thoughts and direction. Cheers!

Sean Cribbs <sean@REDACTED>
Software Engineer
Basho Technologies, Inc.
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