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From Nick Kew <n...@webthing.com>
Subject A Bloat of Libraries
Date Tue, 03 Jan 2006 06:37:10 GMT
Running ldd on the curent httpd on my desktop - like anywhere else -
shows an alarming number of libraries.  This is IMO a Bad Thing.

In sharp contrast, httpd -l lists just the basic four "compiled in modules".
This is IMO a Good Thing.

Whenever I write a module that requires an external library, I avoid
linking to it and use LoadFile instead.  This avoids the likelihood of
dependency hell with conflicting library versions and segfaults[1].
Or the confusing situation on Windows where users may have to
LoadFile zlib before they can load libxml2[2].

I'm wondering what it would take to refactor the build procedure
to avoid linking anything but a few core libraries, and substitute
a Core configuration section in httpd.conf to load them with
LoadFile instead.  Obvious candidates for LoadFile include
DBM and SQL libs, SSL and crypto.

Amongst modules, we should apply the same principle: e.g.
with mod_deflate and zlib.

How about modularised dependencies as a goal for 2.4?

[1] As reported from time to time with pcre - e.g. PR#23952.
OK I didn't find any open reports of that in bugzilla, but it's a
fairly regular question on the mailinglists, and every linked
library carries its own risk.

[2] This is the single most common support question I get
regarding mod_proxy_html, and I still don't know whether it
just depends on whether they have mod_deflate, and if so
how it depends on module load order, etc.

-- 
Nick Kew

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