patch: --enable-tests and --only-dependencies

Andres Löh andres at
Fri Feb 17 16:35:56 CET 2012

Hi Thomas.

>>> Actually, since we won't be running test suites automatically (until
>>> the next release of Cabal), they should probably be disabled, too.
>> I'm still not sure if I understand this. If you enable tests and
>> benchmarks, shouldn't they then at least be installed? Whereas if you
>> pull in the dependencies, but then don't build them, what did you pull
>> in the dependencies for?
> The dependencies are pulled in for the case where you do 'cabal
> install --enable-benchmarks --only-dependencies' to quickly pull in
> all the deps for a project you are developing.

Yes, I was under the mistaken assumption that tests and benchmarks
are installed, too.

>>> I'm working on the patch for Cabal that we need in order to run tests
>>> automatically. Hopefully, I'll send it to the list this afternoon.
>>> Then, after the cabal-install release, we can turn automatic tests
>>> back on.
>> Got it. Is it actually wise to run tests automatically and fail the
>> installation if tests fail? Don't you think there might be users who'd
>> like to have the test suites installed, be able to run them in their
>> own time, and look closely at the results, even if some of them might
>> fail?
> Now I understand what you mean. However: tests and benchmarks never
> get installed. They never live outside the build directory, so if they
> don't get run before install takes place, they'll be deleted with the
> build directory. This is why I don't know what we'd do with benchmarks
> if we built them: we could run them, but what would we do with the
> results?

So, let me ask whether it's really the right decision that tests and
benchmarks are never installed? I agree that they're *mainly* useful
for development, but aren't there cases where one might want to have
tests and benchmarks be run on a client machines, as part of debugging
a problem?


Andres Löh, Haskell Consultant
Well-Typed LLP,

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