It has been reported that the current midas release candidate does not build on el5 linux (SL/RHEL/CentOS-5).
According to Red Hat, el5 is end-of-life, last SL 5 (SL5.11) was done in 2014, so this linux is very old. Also as it happens, I do not have access to any
el5 machines to check if midas builds or runs (but this can be fixed).
On the midas web page (https://midas.triumf.ca) we do not explicitly state which versions of which linux we definitely support. Most other open-
source projects only support current major linux distributions, hardly anybody supports end-of-life linuxes such as el5. Some projects do not even
support recent linuxes still widely in use (ROOT6 does not build on stock el6 and there is no KDE5 for el7).
So back to midas. Support for different operating systems comes down to:
1) C/C++ language support. We still use el6 (GCC 4.4.7), so use of c++-11 language features should be avoided
2) operating system features support:
a) sysv semaphores (sysv shared memory no longer used, cannot be used on macos)
aa) (macos also is missing parts of the sysv semaphore api, such as "wait for lock, with timeout", we are using an ugly work-around)
b) posix shared memory with mprotect() & co
c) posix mutexes, including recursive-type mutexes (this seems to be the problem on el5)
d) bsd networking (need to migrate from select() to poll() and from gethostbyname() to getaddrinfo() & co (for IPv6 support))
Not all of these operating system functions are required for all of midas. Running mhttpd and mlogger requires
pretty much everything. Running just a frontend connected to midas through the mserver requires the least features,
just the networking is enough, I think.
Obviously we cannot support midas in perpetuity on all versions of all operating systems, once I do not have
access to a machine, I cannot even check that midas builds and that it runs the basic functions.
Instead, we could provide a "feature reduced" build of midas (makefile target) that includes "just enough" of midas
to (say) run a frontend, maybe even odbedit. We already have some provisions for this, but no obvious documented
way actually doing it.
So back to el5.
How important it is to support very old operating systems?
How many people still use el5?
How about old versions of Ubuntu? Macos?
If you use anything older than el6, can you speak up,
(and if possible say why you cannot migrate to an up-to-date linux).