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News & Views

Happy New Year to all. Last year had its ups and downs, so here's hoping that 2012 sees a much more settled year :)

2011 ended on a rather sour note, with our previous hosting company, Hetzner, causing us no small amount of stress and infuriation last year. I could recount all the problems, but suffice to say I would never recommend them to anyone ever again.

Thankfully 2012 has started on a much brighter note, in part thanks to our new hosting company, Bytemark, who have been absolute stars with their fantastic support and just generally being absolutely cool guys. They also gave a very healthy discount for our new server too, which was very much appreciated. They are our first corporate sponsor, and the CPAN Testers site will be updated soon to acknowledge our sponsors more officially. We have had other sponsors approach us, as well as individuals, who wish to donate to CPAN Testers. As a consequence a new fund is being set up so everyone can contribute to help CPAN Testers cover costs. We'll have more details for you as soon as we've finalised the details.

The current server has recently suffered a slight problem due to the backups we are doing. We no longer backup the complete database, but the sheer volume of data we do backup, has increased so much that we've had to re-adjust the way we backup the data. As a consequence of this as well as the problems we've had with the SQLite database, I'm going to look at a better way of backing up and distributing the data. This will hopefully form part of the work I intend to cover during the 2012 QA Hackathon in Paris.

We've passed the 18 million reports mark, and we are well on our way to 19 million. For the past two months we have been submitting nearly 1 million reports each month, and I fully expect us to see this increasing through the year. We're currently testing across 14 different OSes (95 platforms) with 38 different varieties of Perl and with around 110 testers submitting reports every month. All of these statistics are slightly down from their peaks, but undaunted many of the regular and high profile testers have all managed to increase their testing coverage. If we do encourage some new testers this year, I expect we'll be seeing over 1 million reports submitted on a regular monthly basis.

Over the last few months I've noticed a few questions popping up on the mailing list, or being asked of me personally, and I suspect other testers have occasionally got the same. Some of the questions are already covered on the wiki, particularly on the CPAN Authors FAQ, but not all, at least not currently. As such, I thought it might be useful to have an occasional feature to help authors and testers point to a more elaborate answer to their questions. If you have any questions, or better yet any complete posts you'd like to contribute, please let me know.

With some already planning their conference season now, if you are planning to promote CPAN Testers, or testing general, at a forthcoming conference, technical event or even a local user group, please let us know and we'll be only to happy to help promote your presentation and the event.

More news is waiting in the wings for next month, so stay tuned :)

PS: Thanks to Joel Berger for his I love CPAN Testers! post.

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