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Re: Paths in Perl

by John M. Dlugosz (Monsignor)
on Sep 05, 2001 at 02:35 UTC ( #110185=note: print w/ replies, xml ) Need Help??


in reply to Paths in Perl

The Opposing View

Using '/' for paths in Perl gives almost no problems on DOS and Windows machines, because the underlying OS accepts / as a synonym for \ (most of the time).

But is that true for all OS's and platforms? Like someone already said, it doesn't work on the Mac. The Perl interpreter itself might change / to : before calling the OS, but what about real /'s in file names, like "notes from 4/27/99"? What about :'s in the file name?

A solid program should always use the native path separator and do so uniformly and consistantly.

If that's not handy, Perl 6 will reportetly offer uniform URL support, so you can use file:// notation on files on any OS, with %xx for funny chars and / for seperators. There might also be a module that deals with paths as a collection of nodes and abstracts the actual syntax.

And just because the OS takes / as an alias, or Perl translates for you behind the scenes, what happens to individual programs you invoke? In the COMMAND.COM shell, the / will parse wrong, as we saw on a recient posting. A program might get confused if / and \ are mixed in the same string. Who knows? you're at the mercy of whoever wrote that program!

—John


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