FAQ 2.6 What modules and extensions are available for Perl? What is CPAN? What does CPAN/src/... mean?

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2.6: What modules and extensions are available for Perl? What is CPAN? What does CPAN/src/... mean?

CPAN stands for Comprehensive Perl Archive Network, a ~1.2Gb archive
replicated on nearly 200 machines all over the world. CPAN contains
source code, non-native ports, documentation, scripts, and many
third-party modules and extensions, designed for everything from
commercial database interfaces to keyboard/screen control to web walking
and CGI scripts. The master web site for CPAN is http://www.cpan.org/
and there is the CPAN Multiplexer at http://www.cpan.org/CPAN.html which
will choose a mirror near you via DNS. See http://www.perl.com/CPAN
(without a slash at the end) for how this process works. Also,
http://mirror.cpan.org/ has a nice interface to the
http://www.cpan.org/MIRRORED.BY mirror directory.

See the CPAN FAQ at http://www.cpan.org/misc/cpan-faq.html for answers
to the most frequently asked questions about CPAN including how to
become a mirror.

CPAN/path/... is a naming convention for files available on CPAN sites.
CPAN indicates the base directory of a CPAN mirror, and the rest of the
path is the path from that directory to the file. For instance, if
you're using ftp://ftp.funet.fi/pub/languages/perl/CPAN as your CPAN
site, the file CPAN/misc/japh is downloadable as
ftp://ftp.funet.fi/pub/languages/perl/CPAN/misc/japh .

Considering that there are close to two thousand existing modules in the
archive, one probably exists to do nearly anything you can think of.
Current categories under CPAN/modules/by-category/ include Perl core
modules; development support; operating system interfaces; networking,
devices, and interprocess communication; data type utilities; database
interfaces; user interfaces; interfaces to other languages; filenames,
file systems, and file locking; internationalization and locale; world
wide web support; server and daemon utilities; archiving and
compression; image manipulation; mail and news; control flow utilities;
filehandle and I/O; Microsoft Windows modules; and miscellaneous

See http://www.cpan.org/modules/00modlist.long.html or
http://search.cpan.org/ for a more complete list of modules by category.

CPAN is not affiliated with O'Reilly Media.


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