[Haskell-cafe] Re: Ubuntu and ghc

Duncan Coutts duncan.coutts at worc.ox.ac.uk
Wed Jun 4 09:22:07 EDT 2008

On Wed, 2008-06-04 at 11:33 +0100, Simon Marlow wrote:
> Claus Reinke wrote:
> > - i don't want to have to remove anything explicitly, because    that 
> > would mean bypassing the haskell installation managers
> > - i would want to see a single haskell installation manager
> >    for each system,
> I think that's fundamentally the wrong approach.  We shouldn't have to 
> build a "Haskell installation manager".  Would you also want installation 
> managers for Perl, Python, Ruby, C, C++, etc. each with their own different 
> user interfaces and feature sets?  I think not - you want a single package 
> manager for the whole system from which you can install/uninstall libraries 
> for any language.

As I see it we need both. We need to make it easy to translate cabal
packages into distro packages. We do have tools to do that at the moment
for Gentoo, Debian and Fedora. I'm sure they could be improved.

However we cannot expect all distros (esp Windows) to have all packages
that are on hackage at all times. That's where it makes sense to have a
tool like cabal-install as a secondary package manager. There's also the
fact that most distro package managers do not handle unprivileged
per-user installations very well.

A further issue is that the dependencies that Haskell packages have are
pretty complex and more so than can actually be expressed in some distro
package systems. In particular Gentoo portage. Binary distros are better
off in that respect since the deps of binary haskell packages are
considerably simpler.


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