You want to install a module file that you downloaded from CPAN over the Net or obtained from a CD.
Type the following commands into your shell. It will build and install Version 4.54 of the Some::Module package.
% gunzip Some-Module-4.54.tar.gz % tar xf Some-Module-4.54 % cd Some-Module-4.54 % perl Makefile.PL % make % make test % make install
Like most programs on the Net, Perl modules are available in source kits stored as tar archives in GNU zip format. If tar warns of "Directory checksum errors", then you downloaded the binary file in text format, mutilating it.
 This is not the same as the zip format common on Windows machines, but newer version of Windows winzip will read it. Prior to Perl 5.005, you'll need the standard port of Perl for Win32, not the ActiveState port, to build CPAN modules. Free versions of tar and gnutar are also available for Microsoft systems.
You'll probably have to become a privileged user with adequate permissions to install the module in the system directories. Standard modules are installed in a directory like /usr/lib/perl5, whereas third-party modules are installed in /usr/lib/perl5/site_ perl.
Here's a sample run, showing the installation of the MD5 module:
% gunzip MD5-1.7.tar.gz % tar xf MD5-1.7.tar % cd MD5-1.7 % perl Makefile.PL Checking if your kit is complete... Looks good Writing Makefile for MD5 % make mkdir ./blib mkdir ./blib/lib cp MD5.pm ./blib/lib/MD5.pm AutoSplitting MD5 (./blib/lib/auto/MD5) /usr/bin/perl -I/usr/local/lib/perl5/i386 ... ... cp MD5.bs ./blib/arch/auto/MD5/MD5.bs chmod 644 ./blib/arch/auto/MD5/MD5.bsmkdir ./blib/man3 Manifying ./blib/man3/MD5.3 % make test PERL_DL_NONLAZY=1 /usr/bin/perl -I./blib/arch -I./blib/lib -I/usr/local/lib/perl5/i386-freebsd/5.00404 -I/usr/local/lib/perl5 test.pl 1..14 ok 1 ok 2 ... ok 13 ok 14 % sudo make install Password: Installing /usr/local/lib/perl5/site_perl/i386-freebsd/./auto/MD5/ MD5.so Installing /usr/local/lib/perl5/site_perl/i386-freebsd/./auto/MD5/ MD5.bs Installing /usr/local/lib/perl5/site_perl/./auto/MD5/autosplit.ix Installing /usr/local/lib/perl5/site_perl/./MD5.pm Installing /usr/local/lib/perl5/man/man3/./MD5.3 Writing /usr/local/lib/perl5/site_perl/i386-freebsd/auto/MD5/.packlist Appending installation info to /usr/local/lib/perl5/i386-freebsd/ 5.00404/perllocal.pod
If your system manager isn't around or can't be prevailed upon to run the installation, don't worry. When you use Perl to generate the Makefile from template Makefile.PL, you can specify alternate installation directories.
# if you just want the modules installed in your own directory % perl Makefile.PL LIB=~/lib # if you have your own complete distribution % perl Makefile.PL PREFIX=~/perl5-private
An even simpler approach is to use the CPAN module from the command line, because it can search for, download, and install the module you need. Suppose you wanted to find the CPAN module Getopt::Declare. All you'd have to do is type:
% perl -MCPAN -e "install Getopt::Declare"
The first time you use the CPAN module, it will ask you some configuration questions. It saves these away so that when you use it in the future, it won't need to ask you those questions again.
The CPAN module also supports an interactive command shell. This can be used to search for modules whose precise names you're uncertain of, check which CPAN modules have newer versions than you have installed, install bundles of related modules, and various other useful commands.
Here's an example run of the interactive shell.
% perl -MCPAN -e shell cpan shell -- CPAN exploration and modules installation (v1.70) ReadLine support enabled cpan> h Display Information command argument description a,b,d,m WORD or /REGEXP/ about authors, bundles, distributions, modules i WORD or /REGEXP/ about anything of above r NONE reinstall recommendations ls AUTHOR about files in the author's directory Download, Test, Make, Install... get download make make (implies get) test MODULES, make test (implies make) install DISTS, BUNDLES make install (implies test) clean make clean look open subshell in these dists' directories readme display these dists' README files Other h,? display this menu ! perl-code eval a perl command o conf [opt] set and query options q quit the cpan shell reload cpan load CPAN.pm again reload index load newer indices autobundle Snapshot force cmd unconditionally do cmd cpan> i /inflect/ CPAN: Storable loaded ok Going to read /home/tchrist/.cpan/Metadata Database was generated on Mon, 07 Apr 2003 22:42:33 GMT Distribution D/DC/DCONWAY/Lingua-EN-Inflect-1.88.tar.gz Module Lingua::EN::Inflect (D/DC/DCONWAY/Lingua-EN-Inflect-1.88.tar.gz) 2 items found cpan> install Lingua::EN::Inflect [build and install output deleted] cpan> quit
The CPAN module is slowly being phased out in favor of CPANPLUS, a module with similar functionality that is built for flexibility as well as power. The CPANPLUS text interface is similar to that of the CPAN module, but it also offers a GUI and programmer interfaces, which can access a lot of functionality that the CPAN module hides.
The documentation for the standard ExtUtils::MakeMaker module; the INSTALL file in the Perl source distribution for information on building a statically linked perl binary