... but fails horribly for me when simply trying to deploy an application.
To explain this I'll focus on my prefered distribution, debian.
Installing debian packages is simply, you get it from the standard repositories, or 3rdparty ones which laos relate to the current set of distributions (stable/testing/unstable). All dependencies *including* the C based APIs that might be required are resolved and simply installed (without asking a million questions, yes I know you can turn it off, but it's hard to find the cause of why it fails then... and it fails mostly due to some simple module failing a single test)
CPANs problem is mostly due to the tests running for the installation of every package, tests the probably have run already for hundreds or thousand others in a more or less similar environment (at least for those using one of the big standard linux distributions). No real need to rerun this tests on every installation. It's fine for a devel box, because I wont to know that the module I upgrade/install works here, but not when I release and deploy my application.
So it would problably make sense to have a BIPAN (a binary installation perl archive network) to simply install the modules, but then again, would this not just duplicate efforts what the actual distributions do. Yes it would, so it's wasted resources, as we probably would never be able to accomodate all the required 3rdparty packages into BIPAN.
So it would probably make more sense to have a simple way to generate packages for distributions. Something that extracts the CPAN info and generates the debian packaging dir or it, or the RPM specfile, hence allowing the package maintainers to easy their work. On debian there is already the great cpan2deb (dh-make-perl) which does that from the other side. Maybe some Module::Install could help here, at least for the most common distruibutions (another topic to discuss endlessly)
Puh, lengthy comment, sorry bout' that, but thanks for reading through.
I'm quite used to the debian distribution, so packaging .deb archives