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Re: [PATCH 1/1] Makefile: add prove and coverage-prove targets

Hi Ævar,

On Wed, 30 Jan 2019, Ævar Arnfjörð Bjarmason wrote:

> On Wed, Jan 30 2019, Johannes Schindelin wrote:
> > On Tue, 29 Jan 2019, Ævar Arnfjörð Bjarmason wrote:
> >
> >> On Tue, Jan 29 2019, Jeff King wrote:
> >>
> >> > On Tue, Jan 29, 2019 at 06:56:08AM -0800, Derrick Stolee via
> >> > GitGitGadget wrote:
> >> >
> >> >> From: Derrick Stolee <dstolee@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
> >> >>
> >> >> When running the test suite for code coverage using
> >> >> 'make coverage-test', a single test failure stops the
> >> >> test suite from completing. This leads to significant
> >> >> undercounting of covered blocks.
> >> >>
> >> >> Add two new targets to the Makefile:
> >> >>
> >> >> * 'prove' runs the test suite using 'prove'.
> >> >>
> >> >> * 'coverage-prove' compiles the source using the
> >> >>   coverage flags, then runs the test suite using
> >> >>   'prove'.
> >> >>
> >> >> These targets are modeled after the 'test' and
> >> >> 'coverage-test' targets.
> >> >
> >> > I think these are reasonable to have (and I personally much prefer
> >> > "prove" to the raw "make test" output anyway).
> >>
> >> I wonder if anyone would mind if we removed the non-prove path.
> >>
> >> When I added it in 5099b99d25 ("test-lib: Adjust output to be valid TAP
> >> format", 2010-06-24) there were still some commonly shipped OS's that
> >> had a crappy old "prove", but now almost a decade later that's not a
> >> practical problem, and it's installed by default with perl, and we
> >> already depend on perl for the tests.
> >
> > It's not only about crappy old `prove`, it is also about requiring Perl
> > (and remember, Perl is not really native in Git for Windows' case;
> We require perl now for testing, NO_PERL is just for the installed
> version of git.

Which is confusing, if you want to put it nicely.

> If you change the various test-lib.sh and test-lib-functions.sh that
> unconditionally uses "perl" or "$PERL_PATH" hundreds/thousands (didn't
> take an exact count, just watched fail scroll by) tests fail.

I know. Oh boy, I know.

But we do not have to keep that status quo, nor do we have to make it

It would not surprise me in the least if we could accelerate our entire
test suite by reducing our heavy reliance on scripting (including Perl) to
the point that it really takes too little time *not* to run. (Right now,
if you are on Windows, you better think twice before you start the test
suite, it will easily take over 3h (!!!) to run in a regular developer
setup. Even on a regular Mac, I would think twice before starting the run
that blocks my machine for easily 20 minutes straight. Needless to say
that few developers, if any, use it to validate their patches, in
particular on Windows. Meaning: for all real purposes, the test suite is
nearly useless on Windows.)

So let's not bake *even more* Perl usage into our test suite. Thanks.

> So my assumption is that anyone running the tests now has perl anyway,
> and thus a further hard dependency on it won't hurt anything.

By that token, the effort to turn many a script into a built-in for better
performance and substantially better error checking would be totally
nonsensical. "Because anyone running Git used those scripts anyway, so
making them a hard dependency won't hurt anything"?

I do not believe even a fraction of a second that that effort is
nonsensical. Just like I do not believe even a fraction of a second that
it makes sense for our test suite to rely on scripting so much. Or for us
to make that reliance even bigger, for that matter.

> > I still have a hunch that we could save on time *dramatically* by
> > simply running through regular `make` rather than through `prove`).
> My hunch is that on the OS's where this would matter (e.g. Windows) the
> overhead is mainly spawning the processes, and it doesn't matter if it's
> make or perl doing the spawning, but I have nothing to back that up...

I have at least the experience of several thousands runs of the test suite
on Windows, together with a couple dozen hours spent recently *just* on
making the CI of GitGitGadget at least bearable.

So I do not quite understand why you offered a contrary opinion when you
have nothing to back it up.

I mean, I would really like to have an informed discussion with you, to
benefit from your skills and from your experience to make the entire
design of our test suite better (there is so much room for improvement, we
should really be able to put together our knowledge to enhance it). It
needs to be based on facts, of course.