|Perl: the Markov chain saw|
I have 22 years experience in IT
Are you talking about marketing, or management? ;)
and have recently been tasked with doing a lot of coding!
As opposed to... What would you normally be doing?
I am a serious DOS hacker so having to deal with Perl is a bit trivial for me
Not sure what you mean by "serious" and "trivial" there...
but I am having a serious problem right out of the box.
Well, maybe we shouldn't be surprised... Perl doesn't come in a box! If you're having trouble with something that comes out of a box, maybe you misread the label and got confused? Whatever you have that came out of that box, it's not Perl. (Or was it you that just came out of the box?)
But seriously folks, if you have a Sun workstation running Solaris, then you don't have to install Perl -- it's already there. If you've done some "DOS hacking" and worked with batch files, then you have a handle on the basics of the command line interface, which is the bread-and-butter of using any unix system like solaris. Some of the unix commands even have the same names as the DOS ones that do the same thing! (mkdir, cd)
But a lot of basic command things have different names ("ls" instead of "dir", "rm" instead of "del", "mv" instead of "ren", and so on) -- could be some tough going for you there, in which case you have my sympathy.
And then there's lots of really cool unix commands, things like "grep" and "cut" and "paste" and (shudder) "awk", that just don't exist at all in DOS (unless you installed some sort of "unix-tools-for-dos" package -- and that shouldn't come in a box either,* so if you try to get it out of a box, or if you're climbing out of a box to use it, it might not work for you).
Anyway, if you can find a command-line shell on your solaris machine (it should be showing something that ends with "$" or ">" as a command-line prompt), you can try this command:
and that should tell you the actual disk path to the perl interpreter that is already available on that machine. It'll probably be "/usr/local/bin/perl", or maybe just "/usr/bin/perl". (Whoa! don't let those forward slashes scare you... they are not option flags! That's just the "forward-thinking" way that unix has for separating directory levels, instead of the "backward" DOS way.)
Well, it's possible that instead of saying "/usr/bin/perl" or whatever, the "which perl" command might say "perl: command not found" or maybe even "no perl found in ..." -- this just means that there's nothing called "perl" in your current PATH (Aha! Another major thing that unix and DOS have in common... surely you know what PATH is for, having already hacked batch files and all.)
So if perl is not in your PATH, well, I could go on at length, but this all seems like a joke, and I've had my share of fun for one evening. Thanks, Kevin, good luck with your new tasks, and welcome to the Monastery!
(* footnote: Well, okay, I do remember something called the "MKS Toolkit" -- wow, that takes me back a couple decades -- which was the first "unix-for-dos" thing I ever heard of, and that did come in a box; this was before the Internet thing caught on, you see, when just about everything came in a box, or in padded or stiff envelopes, you know, with those 5-inch floppy disks, or the 3-inch ones that weren't really floppy at all... they didn't even have compact disks back then -- not for computers, at least. MKS appears to still be available, BTW, but I don't know if it still comes in a box... you might want to check it out, in case someone takes that solaris thing away and makes you go back to DOS.)