README - Perl Core Test Smoke Suite


  $ perl      # will generate
  $ sh

or on windows:

    C:\smoke>configsmoke     # will generate smokecurrent.bat

For the impatient: see the section "GETTING STARTED"


The perl core test smoke suite is a set of scripts and modules that try to run the perl core tests on as many configurations as possible and combine the results into an easy to read report.

The basic cycle looks like:

    foreach $config ( @configurations ) {
        make distclean
        ./Configure $config
        make test (and log failures)

Before you start "smoking" we expect you have tried to build some of the configurations "by hand" to check if your environment is okay.


The Test::Smoke suite has been designed to be installed outside of the normal Perl library-tree. It will also run from the directory in which it was un-tar-gzipped, but if you like to keep up to date with Test::Smoke releases, it might be useful to use the standard perl-module installation commands:

    $ perl Makefile.PL
    $ make test
    $ make install

The Makefile.PL program will ask for a directory in which Test::Smoke should be installed (this will set PREFIX, INSTALLSCRIPT and LIB all to that directory).

If you want to automate the Makefile.PL step you need to set two environment variables: $ENV{SMOKE_INSTDIR}='../p5smoke' and $ENV{AUTOMATED_TESTING}=1


You are now ready to run the configuration program:

    $ perl

You will have to answer some questions that help create a configuration file for the Test::Smoke suite.

You should check the perlcurrent.cfg (or w32current.cfg on MSWin32) build-configurations file and remove options that are not supported for your platform.

Now you are set to go:

    $ sh

If something useful happens, do it every night using a scheduler.


Test::Smoke configuration

You can create configurations by running the program. Please see its documentation.

Build configurations

At the moment there are no guidelines of how to change the build-configuration best to fit the needs of perl5-porters while still getting as much smoke out of the test as possible, simply because the needs of perl5-porters change over time:).

This also makes Test::Smoke somewhat volatile, as we aim to please the perl5-porters as much as possible, to help make perl even better, more stable and as thoroughly tested as possible.

Note to MSWin32 users

To make it clear, the perl core test smoke suite treats cygwin and DJGPP as unixy platforms and not as true MSWin32.

To keep in sync with the source-tree, it is recommended you use git. As long as you use a version that also comes with a command-line tool.

Some problems have been reported with older versions of cygwin and the patch program during the [nd]make test stage of Test::Smoke. Don't worry about it if you do not intend to use patch.

During smoke testing stuff might crash and give a popup. You'll want to disable Windows error reporting:

    Action Center (from Control Panel)
      -> Maintenance
          -> Settings
              -> Never check for solutions

For more information see:

In "older" Windows versions (before 7) we have found some problems with the default windows debugger Dr.Watson. By default Dr.Watson will pop-up when the moral equivalent of a segmentation fault happens, this will make the smoke wait for user input. You can disable this by starting drwtsn32.exe and un-check the Visual Notification and Sound Notification check-boxes and press OK.

Slow Systems

It can happen that your system is not able to pursue all the tests, either because it is too slow or because some of the configurations are not supported by the system. At first, don't worry, they are detected by the report creation script and shown as such.

After the first run gave you some idea of how long the smoke will run on your system, you can create your own copy of smoke.cfg where you either add new combinations and/or test levels, or delete lines to speed up the run time of Test::Smoke.

Availability and references

        [subscribe: <>]
        [subscribe: <>]
  Perl general QA:

We also keep a database of smokereports that are created by Test::Smoke 1.58 or higher.


Copyright (C) 2001-2014

  * H.Merijn Brand
  * Abe Timmerman

This suite is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the same terms as Perl itself, without consulting the author.

(Future) Co-Authors and or contributors should agree to this before submitting patches.




This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT ANY WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE.


The perl core test smoke suite is maintained by Abe Timmerman <>.

H.Merijn Brand <> in dialogue and consultation with Michael Schwern <>, the Perl QA pumpkin.

Contributors and/or co-authors:

    Configurations and
      nuts and bolts    Nicholas Clark <>            Jarkko Hietaniemi
    Portability issues  Will Coleda - IMG <>
    Safety              Richard Soderberg
    Win32/MSC5/dmake    Mattia Barbon
                        Abe Timmerman <>
                        Christian Walde <> *
    Cygwin              John Peacock <>
    Sharing issues      Blair Zajac
    Good ideas          Jos Boumans <>
    VMS                 Craig Berry *
    SysInfo             Alain Barbet
                        Merijn Brand *
                        Alan Burlison
                        Allen Smith
                        David Woolger
                        Campo Wijerman

and all the people having useful suggestions and nits, starting at YAPC::Europe-2.0.01, where Michael talked Merijn into simplifying his own test-suite and sharing it with the community.

The Test::Smoke team.


As always, have the appropriate amount of fun!


ReleaseNotes, FAQ


  • More test-suite

  • VMS?