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Re: the curl user survey 2019 analysis

From: Daniel Stenberg via curl-library <>
Date: Wed, 5 Jun 2019 08:23:46 +0200 (CEST)

On Wed, 5 Jun 2019, Jeffrey Walton wrote:

> For next year's survey I would be interested to know what percentage of the
> folks who build cURL from sources run the self tests before installation
> (re: Building curl). It is merely a a curiosity of mine.

I can already guess: a very tiny portion of users. For several reasons:

  1. Most users don't build curl at all
  2. Many users opt to not run the tests
  3. Many users build on systems that can't run the test suite
  4. Many users build with build systems that don't offer tests

I personally don't think of this as a very big problem. I view the tests as
something mostly oriented for us who develop curl to detect problems *before*
they are released.

The amount of issues we get reported by users who get test failures on their
own with a release version is minuscule. And out of those we get reported, it
usually turns out to be a problem with the tests rather than with curl... :-/

> But it might also show a gap in build procedures. If you find too few folks
> are performing the 'make check' step, then it might be wise to have the
> 'make install' recipe run it for them.

While I sympathize with the idea, I don't think that's the right way either.
Most users who build curl from source build it and use it on a platform that's
been tested a million times already. Running the same tests on the same
platforms a million extra times is just a waste of time and resources.

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Received on 2019-06-05