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A Complete Resource for Developing Applications Using ActivePerl!
Take advantage of the cross-platform functionality of ActivePerl,the most complete Perl package available. ActivePerl brings the same scripting capability to the Win32 environment as Perl has to the UNIX environment,and this groundbreaking guidebook will show you everything you need to develop powerful,real-world solutions quickly and easily.
From basic compatibility fundamentals to interface migration,this definitive reference will explain how to use the development tools to get the most out of ActivePerl when migrating Perl applications to the Windows environment.
Inside,Perl expert Martin Brown covers: Migrating UNIX Applications to Windows File and process management Systems information and administration CGI and ASP DevelopmentActiveState Perl Debugger ODBC Database Connectivity Perl and OLE Solutions Object oriented programming Up-to-date and thorough,no other book offers the depth and breadth of coverage as ActivePerl Developer's Guide,and is essential for any developer using ActivePerl.
Important coverage includes: ActivePerl 5. 6
Migrating to Perl from Visual Basic VB/Perl function cross-reference Cross-platform Interfaces with Tk Communicating with Windows APIs Using Perl with ActiveX
Programming with the Win32 Library Debugging using ActiveState Perl Debugger Tips and tricks for cross-platform development On the CD-ROM: All of the book's source code,and ready to run scripts for using databases,shared resources,and systems management
Perl is probably best known for its skills within the arena of web programming. Because Perl has some very strong text-handling abilities, it is ideally suited to processing the information that is supplied by forms from websites, and also for formatting and returning information using HTML (Hypertext Markup Language). A number of famous and many quite ordinary sites use Perl behind the scenes on their web server to support input from forms, to produce reports, and even to run complete online stores-for instance, Amazon (http://www.amazon.com) uses Perl to handle their shopping facilities.
This book concentrates on the development of applications using Perl under Windows 95/98, NT, and 2000. These platforms are more commonly known collectively as Win32. Primarily, we'll be looking at the development of code that is portable between Unix and Win32. Initially, we'll be concentrating on how you can write code that takes advantage of Perl's cross-platform capabilities, then we'll look more closely at the Win32-specific extensions that can enhance the applications you develop. We'll start this chapter by looking at why you might use Perl in the first place and then move on to the history of Perl and, more specifically, thehistory and availability of Perl on the Windows platform.
Why Use Perl?
Perl is a very flexible language that allows you to develop applications very quickly with little fuss or complication. It has a number of very strong features, including the built-in ability to handle text and regular expressions in a natural fashion without requiring external libraries. Perl is also supported on a number of platforms and has one of the largest "user" followings on the Internet. The Perl community works very hard to help Perl users and programmers. There is even a global repository for Perl libraries and extensions called CPAN (Comprehensive Perl Archive Network) that users can investigate when they start to write their own applications.
Because of this wide support, and because Perl is such a practical lan-guage with many abilities, it can be used to program all sorts of applications. Unlike languages such as C/C++ and Pascal, Perl does not need to be compiled before it is used, which helps to reduce the development time. It also does preclude the need for a defined structure-we can write a program in one line without worrying about importing any modules or making any explicit definitions. Some of the other main features of the Perl language are outlined in the following sections.
Perl Is Free It may not seem like a major feature, but in fact being free is very important. Some languages, such as C (which is free with compilers such as GNU's gcc), have been commercialized by Metrowerks, Microsoft, and other companies. Other languages, such as Visual Basic, are entirely commercial. Perl's source code is open and free-anybody can download the C source that constitutes a Perl interpreter. Furthermore, you can easily extend the core functionality of Perl both within the realms of the interpreted language and by modifying the Perl source code.
Perl Is Simple to Learn, Concise, and Easy to Read
Because of its history and roots, most people with any programming experience will be able to program with Perl. It has a syntax similar to C and shell script, among others, but with a less restrictive format. Many things are more quickly written in Perl because of the number of built-in functions and logical assumptions that the Perl interpreter makes during execution. It's also easy to read, because the code can be written in a clear and concise format that almost reads like an English sentence.
Perl Is Fast
As we will see shortly, Perl is not an interpreter in the strictest sensethe code is compiled before it is executed. Compared to most scripting languages, this makes execution almost as fast as writing compiled C code...
|Ch. 1||Introduction and Background||3|
|Ch. 2||Using Perl for Windows||19|
|Programming with the Win32 Library||43|
|Ch. 3||Database Access||45|
|Ch. 4||File Management||111|
|Ch. 5||Process Management||157|
|Ch. 6||Interprocess Communication||187|
|Ch. 8||Systems Information and Administration||253|
|Ch. 9||Web Development||313|
|Ch. 10||Interface Development||353|
|Ch. 11||Beyond Compatibility||425|
|ActivePerl Development Tools||455|
|Ch. 12||Perl Package Managers||457|
|Ch. 13||ActiveState Perl Debugger||477|
|Ch. 14||Creating Standalone Applications||495|
|Visual Basic Migration Guide||503|
|Ch. 15||A Difference of Approach||505|
|Ch. 16||Variables, Operators, and Statements||513|
|Ch. 17||Functions, Modules, and Object Orientation||553|
|Ch. 18||Manipulating Data||587|
|App. A: Resource Guide||631|
|App. B||Tk Quick Reference||641|
|App. C||Visual Basic/Perl Function and Operator Migration References||663|
|App. D||Windows Error Concepts and Descriptions||831|