Starting with h2xs
Looking at the Templates
The Prototype Module Itself
Controlling the Distribution with Makefile.PL
Alternate Installation Locations (PREFIX=...)
Trivial make test
Trivial make install
Trivial make dist
Using the Alternate Library Location
In Chapter 12, you created a fictional Island::Plotting::Maps module, and built the right support for Exporter so that you could include use Island::Plotting::Maps in a program.
While the resulting .pm file is useful, it's not very practical. There's a lot more to building a real module than just creating the .pm file. You'll also need to consider and implement the following questions:
As Roy Scheider uttered in the movie Jaws: "You're gonna need a bigger boat." That "bigger boat" is the difference between a module and a distribution.
A distribution contains the module (or collection of related modules), plus all the support files required to document, test, ship, and install the module. While you could potentially construct all these files by hand, it's much simpler to use a tool that comes with Perl, awkwardly called h2xs
The name h2xs has an interesting pedigree. Back in the early days of Perl 5, Larry invented the XS language to describe the glue code that Perl needs to talk to C-language functions and libraries. Originally, this code was written entirely by hand, but the h2xs tool was written to scan simple C-include header files (ending in .h) and generate most of the XS directly. Hence, h "2" (to) XS. Over time, more functions were added, including generating template files for the rest of the distribution. Now here we are, about to describe how to use h2xs for things that aren't either h or xs. Amazing.
The h2xs tool creates a series of template files that serve as a starting point for the distribution files. You simply need to say h2xs -XAn, followed by the name of the module—in this case, Island::Plotting::Maps. Here's what the output looks like:
If there's more than one module in the distribution, it should be the name of the most important module. Others can be added later.
$ h2xs -XAn Island::Plotting::Maps Defaulting to backwards compatibility with perl 5.8.0 If you intend this module to be compatible with earlier perl versions, please specify a minimum perl version with the -b option. Writing Island/Plotting/Maps/Maps.pm Writing Island/Plotting/Maps/Makefile.PL Writing Island/Plotting/Maps/README Writing Island/Plotting/Maps/t/1.t Writing Island/Plotting/Maps/Changes Writing Island/Plotting/Maps/MANIFEST
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