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Sunday September 05, 2004
03:35 PM

The root of the problem

[ #20747 ]

I found my module installation problem: it has nothing to do with CPAN.pm (thank god).

It comes down to how different people do things. I do a lot of Perl and install a lot of modules on my Powerbook, so I chown-ed the Perl modules directories to my normal, non-priveleged user. I can install modules for all users and do so without any special priveleges. (In past lives I have also used a "perl" group to do that when several people should have that ability).

Not everyone does it that way. Maybe nobody else does, even. If I don't own the directories as my regular user, I invoke super-user privs:

sudo cpan Local::Foo

Well, in my present hair-pulling problem, that's a whole different ballgame since the module writes and reads files, and they need a particular set of priveleges (not up to me). The super-user gets to do a lot of things the priveleges don't imply.

albook_brian[1457]$ ls -l
total 0
----------  1 brian  brian  0  5 Sep 14:54 not_readable
-r--------  1 brian  brian  0  5 Sep 14:54 readable
albook_brian[1458]$ perl -le 'print "Readble!" if -r shift' not_readable
albook_brian[1459]$ sudo perl -le 'print "Readble!" if -r shift' not_readable
Readble!

I'm not sure how this translates to other operating systems, and I had previously thought the usual "stoopid Windows can't get it right" mantra, but even my Mac OS X and FreeBSD boxen do the same thing. I'm guessing that some OSen must do it differently or I would have received more failure reports.

Or maybe everyone is installing things in private directories. Or the module is crap and no one uses it. :)

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