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XSLoader(3)            Perl Programmers Reference Guide            XSLoader(3)



NAME
       XSLoader - Dynamically load C libraries into Perl code

VERSION
       Version 0.06

SYNOPSIS
           package YourPackage;
           use XSLoader;

           XSLoader::load 'YourPackage', $YourPackage::VERSION;

DESCRIPTION
       This module defines a standard simplified interface to the dynamic linking mechanisms available on many plat-
       forms.  Its primary purpose is to implement cheap automatic dynamic loading of Perl modules.

       For a more complicated interface, see DynaLoader.  Many (most) features of "DynaLoader" are not implemented in
       "XSLoader", like for example the "dl_load_flags", not honored by "XSLoader".

       Migration from "DynaLoader"

       A typical module using DynaLoader starts like this:

           package YourPackage;
           require DynaLoader;

           our @ISA = qw( OnePackage OtherPackage DynaLoader );
           our $VERSION = '0.01';
           bootstrap YourPackage $VERSION;

       Change this to

           package YourPackage;
           use XSLoader;

           our @ISA = qw( OnePackage OtherPackage );
           our $VERSION = '0.01';
           XSLoader::load 'YourPackage', $VERSION;

       In other words: replace "require DynaLoader" by "use XSLoader", remove "DynaLoader" from @ISA, change "boot-
       strap" by "XSLoader::load".  Do not forget to quote the name of your package on the "XSLoader::load" line, and
       add comma (",") before the arguments ($VERSION above).

       Of course, if @ISA contained only "DynaLoader", there is no need to have the @ISA assignment at all; moreover,
       if instead of "our" one uses the more backward-compatible

           use vars qw($VERSION @ISA);

       one can remove this reference to @ISA together with the @ISA assignment.

       If no $VERSION was specified on the "bootstrap" line, the last line becomes

           XSLoader::load 'YourPackage';

       Backward compatible boilerplate

       If you want to have your cake and eat it too, you need a more complicated boilerplate.

           package YourPackage;
           use vars qw($VERSION @ISA);

           @ISA = qw( OnePackage OtherPackage );
           $VERSION = '0.01';
           eval {
              require XSLoader;
              XSLoader::load('YourPackage', $VERSION);
              1;
           } or do {
              require DynaLoader;
              push @ISA, 'DynaLoader';
              bootstrap YourPackage $VERSION;
           };

       The parentheses about "XSLoader::load()" arguments are needed since we replaced "use XSLoader" by "require", so
       the compiler does not know that a function "XSLoader::load()" is present.

       This boilerplate uses the low-overhead "XSLoader" if present; if used with an antic Perl which has no
       "XSLoader", it falls back to using "DynaLoader".

Order of initialization: early load()
       Skip this section if the XSUB functions are supposed to be called from other modules only; read it only if you
       call your XSUBs from the code in your module, or have a "BOOT:" section in your XS file (see "The BOOT: Key-
       word" in perlxs).  What is described here is equally applicable to the DynaLoader interface.

       A sufficiently complicated module using XS would have both Perl code (defined in YourPackage.pm) and XS code
       (defined in YourPackage.xs).  If this Perl code makes calls into this XS code, and/or this XS code makes calls
       to the Perl code, one should be careful with the order of initialization.

       The call to "XSLoader::load()" (or "bootstrap()") has three side effects:

       ?   if $VERSION was specified, a sanity check is done to ensure that the versions of the .pm and the (compiled)
           .xs parts are compatible;

       ?   the XSUBs are made accessible from Perl;

       ?   if a "BOOT:" section was present in the .xs file, the code there is called.

       Consequently, if the code in the .pm file makes calls to these XSUBs, it is convenient to have XSUBs installed
       before the Perl code is defined; for example, this makes prototypes for XSUBs visible to this Perl code.
       Alternatively, if the "BOOT:" section makes calls to Perl functions (or uses Perl variables) defined in the .pm
       file, they must be defined prior to the call to "XSLoader::load()" (or "bootstrap()").

       The first situation being much more frequent, it makes sense to rewrite the boilerplate as

           package YourPackage;
           use XSLoader;
           use vars qw($VERSION @ISA);

           BEGIN {
              @ISA = qw( OnePackage OtherPackage );
              $VERSION = '0.01';

              # Put Perl code used in the BOOT: section here

              XSLoader::load 'YourPackage', $VERSION;
           }

           # Put Perl code making calls into XSUBs here

       The most hairy case

       If the interdependence of your "BOOT:" section and Perl code is more complicated than this (e.g., the "BOOT:"
       section makes calls to Perl functions which make calls to XSUBs with prototypes), get rid of the "BOOT:" sec-
       tion altogether.  Replace it with a function "onBOOT()", and call it like this:

           package YourPackage;
           use XSLoader;
           use vars qw($VERSION @ISA);

           BEGIN {
              @ISA = qw( OnePackage OtherPackage );
              $VERSION = '0.01';
              XSLoader::load 'YourPackage', $VERSION;
           }

           # Put Perl code used in onBOOT() function here; calls to XSUBs are
           # prototype-checked.

           onBOOT;

           # Put Perl initialization code assuming that XS is initialized here

DIAGNOSTICS
       Can't find '%s' symbol in %s
           (F) The bootstrap symbol could not be found in the extension module.

       Can't load '%s' for module %s: %s
           (F) The loading or initialisation of the extension module failed.  The detailed error follows.

       Undefined symbols present after loading %s: %s
           (W) As the message says, some symbols stay undefined although the extension module was correctly loaded and
           initialised. The list of undefined symbols follows.

       XSLoader::load('Your::Module', $Your::Module::VERSION)
           (F) You tried to invoke "load()" without any argument. You must supply a module name, and optionally its
           version.

LIMITATIONS
       To reduce the overhead as much as possible, only one possible location is checked to find the extension DLL
       (this location is where "make install" would put the DLL).  If not found, the search for the DLL is transpar-
       ently delegated to "DynaLoader", which looks for the DLL along the @INC list.

       In particular, this is applicable to the structure of @INC used for testing not-yet-installed extensions.  This
       means that running uninstalled extensions may have much more overhead than running the same extensions after
       "make install".

BUGS
       Please report any bugs or feature requests via the perlbug(1) utility.

SEE ALSO
       DynaLoader

AUTHORS
       Ilya Zakharevich originally extracted "XSLoader" from "DynaLoader".

       CPAN version is currently maintained by Sebastien Aperghis-Tramoni <sebastienATaperghis.net>

       Previous maintainer was Michael G Schwern <schwernATpobox.com>

COPYRIGHT
       This program is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the same terms as Perl itself.



perl v5.8.8                       2001-09-21                       XSLoader(3)