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From Alexei Kosut <ako...@leland.Stanford.EDU>
Subject RE: am I dreaming?
Date Thu, 25 Mar 1999 21:58:08 GMT
On Thu, 25 Mar 1999, Dean Gaudet wrote:

> BTW, I'd like to suggest that people should be very concerned about tying
> themselves to a binary module for apache... because even with such an
> interface there's no guarantee that it will work across an upgrade.  And
> you won't have source, so how will you fix the bugs?  You know, the
> standard arguments for having source.  As soon as you introduce one binary
> module into the mix you're tying your hands behind your back.

Yep... but that isn't necessarily a bad thing. So long as it's done right,
I certainly think binary modules are a good thing. Not so much so people
can ship proprietary modules but so people can ship easy-to-install
modules. Especially on systems like NT where installing a source-only
module requires the purchase (and installation) of a compiler.

However, it is true that Apache doesn't release all that often. I
certainly have little problem with 1.2 modules being incompatible with
1.3, although it irks me when we have to break binary compatibility for
minor releases. But *shrug*

This is one of the reasons I like Java. Source and binary compatibility
are one and the same. A native Java interface to the Apache API might not
be a bad idea, even if just for this reason. Of course, it might be a bad
idea for other reasons :)

> For another similar example read the linux-kernel archives around the time
> 2.2.0 was released, there was a nice huge thread on pretty much the same
> topic:  binary-only linux kernel modules.  Linus strives for source
> compatibility, cares not about binary compatibility, but never holds back
> the progress of the kernel just to keep the binary folks happy. 

I was about to make a very silly comment about how with Linux you can
compile the kernel so it will let you load the modules anyway, before I
remembered that Apache ships with source also...

-- Alexei Kosut <> <>
   Stanford University, Class of 2001 * Apache <> *

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