[Hackage] #265: Cabal field stability not useful

Hackage trac at galois.com
Tue Apr 8 19:02:57 EDT 2008

#265: Cabal field stability not useful
  Reporter:  guest          |        Owner:         
      Type:  defect         |       Status:  new    
  Priority:  normal         |    Milestone:         
 Component:  Cabal library  |      Version:
  Severity:  normal         |     Keywords:         
Difficulty:  normal         |   Ghcversion:  6.8.2  
  Platform:                 |  
 As it stands, the 'stability:' field isn't very useful. Hardly anyone uses
 it, and even if someone does, it does minimal good, since it's just an
 arbitrary string.

 I propose it be changed into an enumerated type, like license: is. That
 way we could do things like have cabal-install warn when installing
 unstable, add view filters to Hackage, and so on. This is all stuff that'd
 be pretty ad-hoc if done on whatever strings package authors were writing.

 Now, what should the entries be? Ideally, we'd like to be able to say a
 couple things. We'd like to say that a release is Stable, or Unstable. For
 example, HaXml's most recent package on Hackage is Unstable, and that's
 why Goerzen's Hpodder uses an older, Stable, version of HaXml.

 But we'd also like to express not just stability, but feature-completeness
 - Alpha, Beta, Release. It's perfectly sensible to have a piece of
 software which is a Stable Alpha; early XMonads were very stable (I was
 using it from the first public repo patches, and it only ever crashed a
 handful of times, less than StumpWM). And equally I'd suggest you could
 have Unstable Betas.

 Most cabal files I've seen using stability: seem to use 'Stable',
 'Unstable', 'Experimental', 'Alpha', or 'Beta'. (Although GTK2HS seems to
 be using 'Stability: provisional'). So perhaps one could make the
 stability field accept 0-2 entries: one from Stable/Unstable, and one from


Ticket URL: <http://hackage.haskell.org/trac/hackage/ticket/265>
Hackage <http://haskell.org/cabal/>
Hackage: Cabal and related projects

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