Perl Lifecycle: End Of Life And Support Status

Last updated on November 10, 2023

Perl is an interpreted, feature-rich, general-purpose, and cross-platform programming language.

Initially, it was released as a Unix scripting language to make reporting easier. However, over the years, it has been iterated into a dynamic programming language, where a lot of the inspiration has come from other programming languages, including C, sh, and sed.

Perl is widely used for CGI scripting and is perhaps the main programming language for this purpose. It is also ideal for novices because of its easy interpretation and syntax.

Support status guide

End of life (EOL) is the end of a product’s useful life. When a product reaches the end of its life cycle, the manufacturer no longer supports it. The following table explains the different phases of a product’s lifecycle. Testing status is when the product is initially released and EOL is when product support is no longer offered. The time between these two points is the support timeframe.

Testing

The software is not yet publicly available. It is in testing phase i.e., alpha, beta, release preview etc.

Active

The software is actively supported by the vendor.

Phasing Out

The software will soon reach its end of life. You need to look for upgrade or migration options. The software will automatically go into phasing out status 2 months before end of life.

End Of Life

The software is no longer supported by the vendor. You need to make sure your system and environment are safe.

Version

Released

Active Support

Security Support

Perl 5.38
9 months and 2 weeks ago
(2 July 2023)
Supported
Ends in 2 years and 2 months
(2 July 2026)
Perl 5.36
1 year and 10 months ago
(27 May 2022)
Supported
Ends in 1 year and 1 month
(27 May 2025)
Perl 5.34
2 years and 10 months ago
(20 May 2021)
Ended 1 year and 10 months ago
(27 May 2022)
Ends in 1 month and 3 days
(20 May 2024)
Perl 5.32
3 years and 9 months ago
(20 June 2020)
Ended 1 year and 10 months ago
(27 May 2022)
Ended 9 months and 3 weeks ago
(20 June 2023)
Perl 5.30
4 years and 10 months ago
(22 May 2019)
Ended 2 years and 10 months ago
(20 May 2021)
Ended 1 year and 10 months ago
(22 May 2022)
Perl 5.28
5 years and 9 months ago
(22 June 2018)
Ended 3 years and 9 months ago
(20 June 2020)
Ended 2 years and 9 months ago
(23 June 2021)
Perl 5.26
6 years and 10 months ago
(30 May 2017)
Ended 4 years and 10 months ago
(22 May 2019)
Ended 3 years and 10 months ago
(30 May 2020)

At the moment, Perl version 5 is the latest one available. It is further released in minor versions, like 5.1, 5.2, 5.26, etc. However, the minor versions that are even are maintenance releases, which are designed for production. The odd-numbered builds are development releases, which are not entirely stable and are for testing purposes only.

Perl is a volunteer-based programming language. This means that it is developed by a community, as opposed to a corporation. This community also provides maintenance updates, which are entirely based on the individual’s goodwill and commitment.

As per Perl documentation, they support two of the most recent production versions at a time. When a newer production version is released, the older one is dropped. Moreover, the community promises to fix any critical issues in the two most recent production releases, and also provide critical security updates for them.

Additionally, they also inform the users that no security updates or bug fixes will be provided for development releases.

That said, the active support is provided for 2 years since the release of a production version of Perl, after which it enters the security support phase, which lasts for another year.