[Haskell-cafe] Private packages on hackage

Roman Cheplyaka roma at ro-che.info
Thu Sep 3 07:42:32 UTC 2015

On 03/09/15 04:42, Alan & Kim Zimmerman wrote:
> Hi all
> I had a chat with Duncan Coutts of Well-Typed about the possibility of
> an extension to hackage which would allow private packages to be
> uploaded and managed by hackage, for a fee.
> The idea is that it operates in a similar fashion to GitHub, where
> public packages are free, but there is a monthly fee for hosting private
> packages. This would give commercial organisations wanting to get
> started with Haskell a simple way to host their packages, so that
> members of the organisation could see the private and public packages
> when logged in, and cabal install would work as expected with the superset.
> Duncan is worried about the up-front effort required vs an uncertain return.
> Personally I think that this could be a good way to fund the hackage
> infrastructure.
> So the question is, apart from me, would anyone be interested in such a
> feature?

This raises the question of who hackage belongs to.

Historically hackage has been a public service with no-one in particular
behind it. Well-Typed volunteered to work on it occasionally, but there
wasn't a sense of ownership or responsibility.
(At least that was how it looked to me.)

Such a service I wouldn't put my private code on.

Recently it seems like Well-Typed started to put more and more effort
into hackage. Perhaps the next logical step is to take formal ownership
of hackage (or make their own clone of hackage providing this feature);
then Alan's idea would make more sense.

For instance, I'd have less of a problem using a similar service from FP
Complete, because I know they are running it.

At Signal Vine, we've already developed the infrastructure around
hosting and building packages, but otherwise I would consider using such
a service depending on what features it provides and how well it fits
out process (and how much it costs, obviously). Bare hackage with
private packages wouldn't cut it; if it did, we'd just run our own
hackage server.


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