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Author image Abe Timmerman


README - Perl Core Test Smoke Suite (1.17)


  $ perl configsmoke.pl
  $ sh smokecurrent.sh


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 standard Perl installation commands:

    $ perl Makefile.PL
    $ make
    $ make test
    $ make install

The Makefile.PL program will ask for a directory in which Test::Smoke should be installed (unless you specify one yourself).

You are now ready to run the configsmoke.pl configuration program:

    $ perl configsmoke.pl

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

You should check the perlcurrent.cfg build-configurations file and remove options that are not supported for your platform.

Now you are set to go:

    $ sh smokecurrent.sh

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

We still supply the old way to run the perl core test smoke suite, but it is not really maintained or supported. Here is what Merijn used to say about installing that:

  Edit F<smoke.sh> and change the PC= definition to reflect the
  location you choose as a builddir. 
  Theoretically you are now ready to go, just use B<at> to give
  it a first shot for tonight.
  Optionally delete lines from F<config.cfg> (or a local copy
  with a different name) for which you are certain your system
  doesn't support it (like threading or 64bit configurations)


As of v1.16_10 there is more than one way to run and configure the perl core test smoke suite.

  • configsmoke.pl

    This will ask your for:

    • Build directory (where the source-tree should go)

    • Which build-configurations file to use (perlcurrent.cfg)

    • How to sync with the repository/snapshot

    • Which patches-to-be-applied file to use

    • Platform specific stuff

    • How to mail the report

  • Configure.pl (unixy only, deprecated)

    This will ask you for:

    • Build directory (where the source-tree should go)

    • How and when to schedule smokes

    • Which build-configurations file to use (smoke.cfg)

    • umask

    After that it will change some settings in the smoke.sh file.

  • Edit smokew32.bat (MSWin32 only, deprecated)

    Edit the smokew32.bat batch file and set the right values.

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 the rsync program. This currently seems only available with Cygwin <http://www.cygwin.com>. (All the cygwin tools run perfectly well under CMD.EXE, so don't let that stop you.)

Windows 95/98/ME do not seem to be ideal platforms to run Test::Smoke on. COMMAND.COM gives some problems while building perl. (See README.win32)

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.

There seems to be a problem with Microsoft .NET/Windows XP and segmentation faults, even if drwtsn32 -i is run to set it as the default debugger.

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.

At the moment there are no guidelines of how to change the 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.

Availability and references

        [subscribe: <daily-build-reports-subscribe@perl.org>]
        [subscribe: <daily-build-subscribe@perl.org>]
  Perl general QA: perl-qa@perl.org
  Development:     perl5-porters@perl.org
The new smoke_db (by Alain Barbet)

Alain Barbet has put a lot of effort in storing the smoke test reports in a database and build a nice WEB-front-end:



Copyright (C) 2001-2003

  * 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.


  • http://www.perl.com/perl/misc/Artistic.html

  • http://www.gnu.org/copyleft/gpl.html

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 smoke suite is maintained by Abe Timmerman <abeltje@cpan.org>.

H.Merijn Brand <h.m.brand@hccnet.nl> in dialogue and consultation with Michael Schwern <schwern@pobox.com>, the Perl QA pumpkin.

Contributors and/or co-authors:

    Configurations and
      nuts and bolts    Nicholas Clark <nick@plum.flirble.org>
    smoke.sh            Jarkko Hietaniemi <jhi@cc.hut.fi>
    Portability issues  Will Coleda - IMG <wjc@infomg.com>
    Safety              Richard Soderberg <rs@oregonnet.com>
    Win32/MSC5/dmake    Mattia Barbon <mbarbon@dsi.unive.it>,
                        Abe Timmerman <abeltje@cpan.org>
    Cygwin              John Peacock <jpeacock@rowman.com>
    Sharing issues      Blair Zajac <blair@orcaware.com>
    Good ideas          Jos Boumans <kane@dwim.org>

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 refactoring

  • Test-suite

  • VMS?

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