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mod_perl On The Rise In August

posted by ziggy on 2002.09.06 15:43   Printer-friendly
geoff writes "According to Security Space, mod_perl is installed on almost 37% of all Apache servers, growing nearly 20% during the month of August. mod_php, on the other hand, was down almost 4% in August to a 39% share. Of particular interest is that mod_perl has seen a significant rise in the past year, while mod_php seems to have been relatively flat during the same period. cool."
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  • The tone of the posting confuses me. Are we merely cheering for mod_perl (something I can get behind), or are we also cheering for the non-increase in the use of mod_php? If so, why?

    I don't use mod_php, but I know that it has its weaknesses. It also seems to get more shit than its due among Perl programmers. For a programmers of a language that revels in the multiplicity of ways of doing things, I wonder why the schadenfreude. Or am I just imagining it?

    Now if we were talking about ASP... :-)

    • all I was trying to say was that it is pretty cool that mod_perl is finally catching up to PHP in this particular statistic.

      of course, my bias toward mod_perl for web application development [modperlcookbook.org] is obvious, so it's only natural that I hope to see mod_perl in the number 1 slot :)
    • I've got to say that most often when talking to PHP "developers" I'm on defense.

      Most seem to want proclaim things such as PHP's amazing ability to split strings on a pattern, or something like that.

      Even in my job perl comes across as an "old" language, unusable for todays modern tasks. Of course the sheer amount of projects we have going kinda refutes that argument :)
    • by m2 (833) on 2002.09.08 5:28 (#12621)

      I've got to admit I have strong feelings against PHP. My introduction to PHP happened during the PHP 3 to 4 transition and it was more or less an exercise in self teaching. The project was nothing but a smallish in-my-free-time database-driven website developed from the ground up. The reason why PHP was picked is that other people involved in that project already had experience with PHP (and one or two where self-proclaimed Perl haters).

      To make a long story short, my frustration with PHP grew continously. The language is amazingly ridig and I had this constant feeling its designers were trying to "make Perl right". For anyone with a passable Perl knowledge, it's quite clear PHP draws visibly from Perl, but, and this is the crux of it, it "corrects" Perl. There Is Not More Than One Way To Do It. Usually there's only one. I guess that makes it easier for people to learn it, because when they ask Joe, they get about the same answer they would get from Mary. But for me the downside is that things tend to get painfully verbose.

      That alone wouldn't be a reason to hate PHP... but sooner or later you'll face PHP's largest weakness: the database API is horrendously inconsistent -- which IMO only reflects the whole picture. After programming with PHP for a while, you have got to ask yourself Why do I do this this way if I'm dealing with Foo but in different way when I'm dealing with Bar even if Foo and Bar are very similar? Regarding the DB API, in the mean time things have got better, someone rolled up the sleeves and wrote a DBI-like thing, but I've never actually used it. But the underlying issue remains.

      Having said that, some people complain about Perls' OO system. They obviously haven't seen PHP's. With the right direction Perl's evolves from "Huh?" to "Wow!" (thank you Damian). PHP's will always remain at the "yuck!" level. PHP's isn't anything but namespaces -- go ahead, try to implement a singleton pattern in PHP (but please keep all your razors and pointy objects locked down, I don't want to feel guilty if you commit suicide while you are at it).

      Put all that aside if you want. PHP's swiss-cheese security record should be reason enough to keep away from it.

      'nuff ranting.

      • I used PHP, then came to Perl through work. PHP is nice for making quick and easy web applications. It is true that the DB API is horribly inconsistent, but making a webapp that's plug'n'play between different RDBMS by experience will need some specialized functions anyway. But if you are willing to tie to one RDBMS, then it's not that bad. Also, remember that coming from one language to another, you tend to bring with you luggage. Although we as experienced developers like the total freedom in Perl, progr
      • I am a Java developer (specialise in websphere ee app development). I am also a lead developer for a multi dev culture in an international merchant bank. Although java been my core, I have had much experience in integrating other cultural dev languages into our environment(ie php, perl, vs, dotnet, etc). Unfortunately I don't see the problems you are complaining about in php as they are common to all environments to some degree or other. Our approach is to apply our architected abstraction layer to the tech
  • I personally reinstalled mod_perl because of my frustration with PHP: I almost classify it as 'Perl on Crack'. IMHO the speed and internal mySQL integration from PHP is the best solution for medium-sized, database-driven portals, but when it comes to handling sensitive user input or managing more complex stuff than templated HTML, I always come back to Perl. It doesn't hurt that the anticipation of Perl6 helps bring back my 'patriotism.'
    • I almost forgot: PHP has had some security issues recently, I think one from simple HTTP POSTs.
      • That probably has much to do with the mod_php decline. Lots of, ehem... "administrators" have PHP installed and active without even knowing about it. Last time I looked at it, SuSE's default installation liked to throw in Apache with PHP just for the fun of it. I figure there's lots of sites out there that having read a PHP security advisory have gone "don't worry, we don't have PHP insta... oops."

        • That probably has much to do with the mod_php decline. Lots of, ehem... "administrators" have PHP installed and active without even knowing about it. Last time I looked at it, SuSE's default installation liked to throw in Apache with PHP just for the fun of it. I figure there's lots of sites out there that having read a PHP security advisory have gone "don't worry, we don't have PHP insta... oops."

          tsunamii.net [tsunamii.net] are crushing web servers [tsunamii.net] in the name of art. Interestingly, the server [195.195.81.5] that is going to be cru

  • The only thing that bugs me is the last word, "cool". It does seem to imply that PHP's loss is perl's gain.

    This report doesn't try to explain why the numbers shift. But if you read the Netcraft report regularly, massive shifts in server popularity are often due to just one big hosting company switching technologies. So I don't know if this says volumes about one technology's greatness over another.

    It is interesting though. I wonder if there are trendy applications driving people to perl. Like, maybe the m
    • I think you're reading a bit much into this. It's quite reasonable to compare one product to its nearest "competitor" in order to see how relative market/mind share is changing over time. I don't know of a much better comparison for mod_perl than PHP, because they tend to fill similar niches even if their capabilities are pretty different. So I think it's possible to use PHP as a benchmark of mod_perl's success, without casting any ill will toward PHP. That's how I read the OP, anyway.

      I don't think Ge

    • Knowing geoff I think you read more into his words than he meant, I doubt that he was attacking php as such. The point is that php is number one, and has held that position for ages. The fact that we're 2% behind means that we're number two and that we're close to becoming number one. Also, our growth while others stagnate means that modperl is very much gaining ground (as opposed to just maintaining itself in a growing universe).

      I think this is great, and I really hope there'll be someone to make

      --

      -- Robin Berjon [berjon.com]

      • The fact that we're 2% behind means that we're number two and that we're close to becoming number one.
        I think that the issue is less we're (almost) #1!, as much as mod_perl is very popular.

        I've known developers who are faced with a decision to develop with either PHP or Perl/mod_perl. A few years ago, many of them chose to use PHP simply because it was more widely adopted. Now, that is no longer the case.

        • I think that the issue is less we're (almost) #1!, as much as mod_perl is very popular.

          Yes of course, but Number One has that extra market ring to it ;-)

          --

          -- Robin Berjon [berjon.com]

        • Yeah, I can believe that. There's a definite ceiling with PHP, unlike perl.

          But, I think I agree with the comment made (deep in another thread) about how people are just *turning off* their default-install PHP due to security issues.

  • Could it be that the inclusion of Apache with mod_perl in the default server install of at least one Linux distribution is a contributing factor for the rise in mod_perl? Just asking...