Help CPAN Testers During meta::hack v2


Would you like to help CPAN Testers during meta::hack v2? Join us on IRC in #cpantesters-discuss on, join our mailing list on, or e-mail me directly at

With meta::hack v2 only two weeks away, I’ve written down my todo list for the hackathon. With another brand-new machine graciously provided by ByteMark, who have been hosting CPAN Testers for years, this year’s hackathon will involve more devops tasks to improve reliability and stability of the various parts of the project.

The new server will be the host for CPAN Testers backend processes, the processes that turn the raw incoming data into the various reports used by the websites and downstream systems. It will also be the new home for the CPAN and BackPAN mirrors that CPAN Testers uses for data, and provides to external users as part of CPAN’s mirrors list.

But though this will be the main goal, it is not the only goal. I hope to finish up the retirement of the SQLite data release process in favor of the new APIs that were developed last year. This means reducing the work the server needs to do, removing some code that would otherwise need maintenance, and streamlining the data flows.

If I have time, I’d like to build a status dashboard for CPAN Testers. This would allow users to see the current state of the websites and backend processes, and should improve transparency about the reliability of the system. I’ve been using Grafana for charts, and I hope to be able to export those charts to another set of web pages on

Finally, the Perl 5 Porters have long used CPAN Testers data to measure the impact of new features, bugfixes, and internal improvements to the Perl 5 interpreter. Development releases of Perl 5 are used to run the test suite of CPAN modules, and if long-stable CPAN distributions start failing, a person will follow up with triage and a report to the Perl 5 Porters. Sometimes this results in a change to the interpreter to fix the problem. Other times the changes are deemed too important and the Perl 5 Porters will submit a patch to the distribution author to make sure it is compatible with the new Perl version. This project is called "blead Perl breaks CPAN".

James Keenan on the Perl 5 development mailing list has asked for a new report on CPAN Testers data to make discovering when blead Perl breaks CPAN easier. This will involve looking for distributions with passing tests on the latest stable Perl, and failing tests on the latest development Perl. From that data, a simple web dashboard can be created. This also involves some database work to ensure we can easily find which Perl version is the latest.

If you would like to help with any of these tasks, or any other task in the CPAN Testers projects (schema, api, backend, web, deploy), let me know on IRC, the mailing list, or email me for questions and guidance.