berrybrew version 1.34 released!

I've released version 1.34 of berrybrew.

Notable changes:

  • UI elements now update on the fly, so all changes are reflected immediately
  • You can 'use' any version of installed Perl from the UI, which opens up a new CLI window set to use the selected version
  • You can now fetch the updated list of Strawberry Perls available through the UI
  • Cloning installed Perls as well as a myriad of other operations can now be done through the UI
  • The API has been updated so that internal objects are updated live-time. This makes having long-running processes possible
  • Build/Test infrastructure updates
  • Documentation updates
  • Minor bug fixes

I've just got a new full time job, programming in Perl... finally, after several years of looking for that perfect work environment. Some of it will be on Windows (which I haven't used except for developing berrybrew), so I'm actually looking forward to using my own software, especially how useful its become thanks to the new UI I've developed.

Happy Perling!

-stevieb

berrybrew version 1.33 released!

I've released berrybrew version 1.33. This version has significant enhancements, along with some bug fixes and handling of some uncaught exceptions. The changes reflect versions 1.30 to 1.33.

Major changes include:

UI:

  • Allows you to install, switch to, remove and use Strawberry Perls directly
  • Can now spawn a CLI window for any Perl you have installed
  • Allows you to spawn a CLI window for the currently active Perl
  • Provides access to modify several of the core configuration options (debug, file association etc)
  • Allows you to disable all berrybrew Perls and restore to system default

Installer:

  • Performs an upgrade on any previous berrybrew install
  • Adds any new configuration options, while preserving the values of any previously set existing ones
  • Provides facility to install the most recent version of Strawberry Perl
  • Allows you to have berrybrew manage the .pl file association
  • Allows you to have the UI run at system startup
  • Aborts if trying to install the same version that's already installed

Functionality:

  • You can now leave off the 32/64 bit prefix on a Perl name, and we'll default to _64
  • All execution paths return a proper exit code
  • Added new berrybrew hidden command, lists all, well, hidden commands

For all other changes, please refer to the Changes file.

Cheers!

-stevieb

berrybrew, the Perlbrew for Windows 1.30 released

Merry Christmas fellow Perlers!

I have been working tirelessly on the newest version of berrybrew, and thought there's no better day to release it.

It brings significant new features:

New Features

  • Added a UI, runs out of the System Tray, allows installing, removing and switching Perls using a button
  • Added new associate command, allowing berrybrew to manage .pl file associations
  • Added berrybrew-refresh command, to be run after switching perls. No more having to re-open command line windows
  • If a newer point release of a major version is introduced, we now seamlessly integrate installed previous point-releases into the Perls available
  • Configuration options are now based in the Windows Registry
  • Added new options command, allows changing configuration options at runtime
  • We now supply a bb command, which is simply a short-hand form for berrybrew
  • Greatly enhanced the self-extracting installer
  • Much more precise handling of the PATH environment variable
  • More graceful handling of exceptions
  • Added info command which displays various internal directory path information
  • Added new hidden/developer commands

UI

The UI is automatically installed by the installer. It starts and resides hidden in the System Tray until it is needed. Simply click the berrybrewUI icon to bring up a Windows Form window. You can install, remove and switch between Perl instances.

When switching Perls using the UI, if you have open CLI windows, you still need to run berrybrew-refresh or open a new CLI window to refresh the path information.

To exit the berrybrewUI, right-click on the System Tray icon, and click Exit.

Installer

There are several enhancements to the installer:

  • We properly check for existing installations, and ask confirmation questions on the actions, depending on information about the previous install. In some cases, we'll ask to do a direct upgrade, in others, we'll ask if we can simply disable the old version before installing the new. See caveats below.

  • We now ask for the directory location of the Perl instance directory (internally referred to as root_dir). If you specify a location that a previous berrybrew used, we'll merrily inherit all of the previously installed Perls.

  • Uninstall is available through Add/Remove programs

  • UI provides select-able options to 1) install the most recent version of Perl, 2) start the UI at system startup, 3) allow berrybrew to manage .pl file association

Caveats: If you have a previous version of berrybrew where you've changed any of the default configuration variables in the config.json file, you will have to manually update these options after install of the new version. Simply run berrybrew options on the new version to see what values are set. Then, open up your previous berrybrew's config.json file, and for each difference, simply run berrybrew options directive value where directive is the name of the option, and value is the value from the old config file. This will be automated in a future release.

File Association

You can now allow berrybrew to manage the .pl file association. We implement this in a similar way to Unix, in which when we're managing this association, the system will use the first perl found in the PATH environment variable.

  • Check current file association with berrybrew associate
  • Allow us to manage the association: berrybrew associate set
  • Revert back to the previous association: berrybrew associate unset

Development Information

  • Broke out the dev build script into three: build_api.bat, build_binary.bat and build_ui.bat. Left in place the build.bat script, which performs all three actions
  • The dev and test builds automatically create and use their own respective registry locations (HKLM\Software\berrybrew-build and HKLM\Software\berrybrew-test)

Desire for Perl wrapper of Mozilla's IoT platform

I've spent more than four years working on Raspberry Pi stuff for Perl, and although it's only garnered a relatively small but thorough interest, it's been a wonderful one to be a part of.

Mozilla has opened up a new IoT Platform, and I'm wondering if it'd be worth the time to provide a Perl interface to it or not.

Thoughts?

berrybrew, the Perlbrew for Windows v1.26 released

I've finally found some time to get some wanted and needed changes implemented into berrybrew.

Some changes were for development and testing of the software itself, a couple of features were added due to community requests, and yet more were requested by a client.

Here's a summary of the new features:

  • Management of external Perl installations; Using the new berrybrew virtual command, one can bring in other installations of Perl for management under berrybrew. For example, if you have an ActiveState Perl installed on the system, you can virtualize it under berrybrew, and use or switch to it just like any of the portable Strawberry Perl's we normally manage. This means that you can switch over to your system Perl when needed, without having to modify PATH, or temporarily disabling berrybrew

  • Unattended installations are now possible. We no longer prompt for user acceptance when running the initial configuration

  • New quick argument to berrybrew switch; This allows you to switch to a different Perl instance persistently without having to close the existing CLI window and opening a new one (note: some binaries and features may not work correctly. If you run into problems, simply open a new window)

  • Export and import modules from one Perl instance to another; berrybrew modules export and berrybrew modules import will dump a list of all installed CPAN distribution names from one Perl and install it on others. The export files can be edited at will before re-importing, and you can even create your own module list files to use as you see fit. Using this feature, in conjunction with berrybrew clone allows you to easily set up template Perl instances for very quick Perl platform setup

  • Ability to change the location where File::HomeDir points to; you can switch between the Windows home directory location, or the default location that Strawberry Portable editions set

Here's an example of the new berrybrew virtual feature:

Configure an external Perl as a berrybrew-managed Perl ("active-state" is just a name you desire that'll show up in berrybrew list and berrybrew available):

> berrybrew virtual active-state

    Specify the path to the perl binary: c:\perl64\bin

    Specify the library path: c:\perl64\site\bin

    Specify an additional path:


    Successfully registered virtual perl active-state

Check that it took:

> berrybrew list

    5.16.3_64 *
    5.10.1_32 
    bb-as-test 
    active-state

> berrybrew available

    ... snip for brevity

    5.16.3_64       [installed] *
    5.16.3_32
    5.14.4_64
    5.14.4_32
    5.12.3_64
    5.12.3_32
    5.10.1_32       [installed]
    5.8.9_32
    bb-as-test      [installed] [custom]
    active-state    [installed] [virtual]

Verify we're still using the previous Perl:

> perl -v

    This is perl 5, version 16, subversion 3 (v5.16.3) built for MSWin32-x64-multi-thread

Use the new one:

> berrybrew use active-state

    perl-active-state
    ==============
    Microsoft Windows [Version 10.0.17763.107]
    (c) 2018 Microsoft Corporation. All rights reserved.


    <berrybrew use active-state>: run "exit" leave this environment

Verify we're using the system's ActiveState Perl:

> perl -v

    This is perl 5, version 26, subversion 3 (v5.26.3) built for MSWin32-x64-multi-thread
    (with 2 registered patches, see perl -V for more detail)

    Copyright 1987-2018, Larry Wall

    Binary build 0000 [fde9aa8a] provided by ActiveState http://www.ActiveState.com
    Built Jul 31 2019 01:43:08

Once the new sub-shell is closed, confirm everything is sane:

> exit

    Exiting <berrybrew use active-state>

> perl -v

    This is perl 5, version 16, subversion 3 (v5.16.3) built for MSWin32-x64-multi-thread

It doesn't need to be ActiveState Perl. Any external Perl installed on the system can be used. All we need is a path to the perl.exe binary, and any library paths (if available).