Perl 5 now uses Git for version control

Nicholas Clark nick at
Mon Dec 22 10:48:27 GMT 2008

On Mon, Dec 22, 2008 at 08:09:52AM +0000, Léon Brocard wrote:

Thanks to Léon for mercilessly herding cats until this happened.

> Interested developers can get a copy of the Perl 5 Git repository at
> at

If your network lets you, it's probably faster to do this:

  git clone git:// perl-git

> In true open source style, Sam Vilain converted Perl's history from
> Perforce to Git. He did the work both in his spare time and in time
> donated by his employer, Catalyst IT. He spent more than a year building
> custom tools to transform 21 years of Perl history into the first
> ever unified repository of every single change to Perl. In addition
> to changes from Perforce, Sam patched together a comprehensive view
> of Perl's history incorporating publicly available snapshot releases,
> changes from historical mailing list archives and patch sets recovered
> from the hard drives of previous Perl release engineers.

Which is really impressive. Thanks Sam.

> Nicholas Clark, the manager for Perl 5.8.9 which was released this week,
> said "I'm looking forward to Git giving me the ability to work either
> online or offline. Perforce is great when I have a network connection,
> but until now those times when I've been trying to develop on trains
> or planes, at stations or airports, I'm back in the 'dark ages' before
> version control. Git solves this problem and more".

Yes, in case you missed it, 5.8.9 escaped last week.

Useless trivia:

I wrote the perlthanks utility on a plane from Vienna to London City in
January. The second (better) implementation for shrinking hashes and arrays
(that is in 5.10) was written on the platform at Bromley North Station in

We now return you to your regularly scheduled beer, buffy and pie.
Remember, only 3 more drinking days until Christmas.*

Nicholas Clark

* There probably should be some warning here about drinking responsibly.
  Units all add up, so avoid drinking chemically strengthened lagers, alcopops,
  nitrokegs, and cheap spirits - save your liver for the decent stuff.

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