Cabal and installing packages.

Keean Schupke k.schupke at
Fri Dec 3 12:10:10 EST 2004

Simon Marlow wrote:

>If you're on a system with a good package manager (i.e. *BSD, Debian,
>Gentoo) then the plan is that this is all handled by the system package
>manager.  We don't want to duplicate that work, and we want to coexist
>with the system's package tools as much as possible.  Cabal will make it
>easy to generate package skeletons for these systems.
I find that even on package managed systems I use CPAN to install perl
modules... I would have thought a nice central repository on
(with mirrors of course) where users can contibute their packages, that
would be built into a Haskell package tool would be useful even for
systems where there is package management.

I find that debian/gentoo etc do not have all the packages available
for say perl, and it is nice to have a consistant interface on any 

I think the ability to do (something like)

    > cabal install <package-name>

and have everything done automatically would be a real advantage for 
beginners, ie:

    - download mirror list from
    - find closest mirror using DNS tld
    - download package
    - resolve dependancies (ie call "cabal install" for each required 
       not on the system)
    - configure package
    - compile package
    - install package (globally if root, locally if normal user)

also the ability to do queries like:

    > cabal list-packages -- lists all packages available from central 

    > cabal find someRandomFunction -- returns name of package which 
exports given function

To do some of the cleverer queries would require a custom server 
(perhaps darcs can do
some/all of this)...


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