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B.3 CPAN: Beyond the Standard Library

If you don't find an entry in the standard library that fits your needs, it's still quite possible that someone has written code that will be useful to you. There are many superb library modules that are not included in the standard distribution, for various practical, political, and pathetic reasons. To find out what is available, you can look at the Comprehensive Perl Archive Network (CPAN). See the discussion of CPAN in the Preface .

Here are the major categories of modules available from CPAN:

  • Module listing format

  • Perl core modules, Perl language extensions and documentation tools

  • Development support

  • Operating system interfaces

  • Networking, device control (modems), and interprocess communication

  • Data types and data type utilities

  • Database interfaces

  • User interfaces

  • Interfaces to or emulations of other programming languages

  • Filenames, filesystems, and file locking (see also filehandles)

  • String processing, language text processing, parsing, and searching

  • Option, argument, parameter, and configuration file processing

  • Internationalization and locale

  • Authentication, security, and encryption

  • World Wide Web, HTML, HTTP, CGI, MIME

  • Server and daemon utilities

  • Archiving, compression, and conversion

  • Images, pixmap and bitmap manipulation, drawing, and graphing

  • Mail and Usenet news

  • Control flow utilities (callbacks and exceptions)

  • Filehandle, directory handle, and input/output stream utilities

  • Microsoft Windows modules

  • Miscellaneous modules