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All the Perl that's Practical to Extract and Report

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  • There are several applications I use in Cygwin besides Perl. X Windows is the most important for work. ssh would be the next important. Having a command line shell to develop with is another. With older versions of Windows, grep was also an important addition. Finally, having a working free C compiler that's a relatively small download is a nice bonus.
    • From the original post, I did not even understand that Perl was at issue. I do use Cygwin for Perl, but primarily I use Cygwin for UNIX. And I'd say even more than that I use Cygwin for continuous improvement: even if Microsoft magically today made some kind of perfect UNIX compatibility (including perfect Perl and perfect X), I would continue to use Cygwin, because "perfect" is a moving target, and while the Cygwin and open source people understand that, Microsoft does not, and likely never will. I use Cygwin instead of several company standards, including Exceed and PuTTY, because it is under such constant quality development. I use it because I'm forced to work within an operating system that is not under that kind of constant improvement.

      If Microsoft open sourced their operating system tomorrow and a community grew up around it that does what the Cygwin team does, or does what the Debian team does, my need for Cygwin might finally start to go away (assuming we get some good UNIX compatibility in there). It's not zealotry for Free Software, or even zealotry for UNIX ... it's zealotry for quality.

      J. David works really hard, has a passion for writing good software, and knows many of the world's best Perl programmers
      • One of the long term trends I see with portability is that cywgin seems to be generating a disproportionate number of bugs for it's userbase.

        So my side of the thought experiment is:

        "If Perl worked perfectly on native Win32, could we (if we chose) abandon cygwin Perl"

        And so far, the answer appears to be "maybe".

        Not that it will actually happen, I'm just trying to understand cygwin's userbase a bit more.
        • I need Perl in Cygwin. It's not that I use Cygwin because I need Perl; it's that I need Cygwin, and since I am there I of course need Perl. To me Cygwin is a platform, and it is my platform of choice (although I'd rather choose a completely open source OS).

          But it should only be maintained by somebody who is really enthusiastic about it.

          For the record, I compile my own Perl everywhere I go, including Cygwin. The days before Perl would compile cleanly on Cygwin out of the box were misery for me. I am

          J. David works really hard, has a passion for writing good software, and knows many of the world's best Perl programmers