Well it's not free, but it's free to try: Activestate Komodo IDE. It's got a GUI based debugger that shows you current values of local and special variables in a tabbed format. More convenient than the built in Perl debugger, IMO.
Re: Looking for a free Perl debugger. Padre/Epic doesnt seem to work.
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I can agree on that. Tried various other things in the past few years. Always went back to the ActiveState products.
Without trying to pitch a product here: At least from my point of view, the full ActivePerl Pro Studio is well worth the price. Having a fully grown IDE *and* Access to the Safari bookshelf saved me quite a lot of frustration. It's certainly not perfect, but it gets the job done.
What i certainly like most is the standard way in which debugging is handled. It's just like i'm used to from other IDEs, just click left of the code line where you want a breakpoint, run and the program stops there - and then you can look at (and modify) all variables.
If it's worth the price for you certainly depends. Do you only do Perl programming for a hobby a few hours a week or is it your job?
For me, i'm doing like 30 hours a week programming in my 40 hour a week job. Plus whatever i do in my spare time. So yeah, paying for a product that helps me isn't really a problem.
Don't use '#ff0000':
use Acme::AutoColor; my $redcolor = RED(); All colors subject to change without notice.
I am not a developer by profession. Just trying to learn Perl. Since I am not writing really big and complex stuff like how you guys write, getting a full version of Komodo would be kind of an overkill for me. But yeah, I am using Komodo IDE and finding it much better. Was using Notepad earlier...
I use Textpad for Perl,C,C++ and casual Java(the free Eclipse IDE for bigger projects). There is also Notepad++. I think both are about $30 shareware.
These are pretty good program editors (block select, regex search and replace, macros, multiple views into the same file, tabs to spaces...). I have a function key defined to run Perl on the active edit window. This key saves all open files, then runs Perl and STDOUT and STDERR are captured in another edit window. So I see the result basically in a second.
Perl compiles and runs so fast that this "hit F4" to run in combination with "print" and Data::Dump or Data::Dumper can do a lot! I seldom need to resort to more complex debuggers, even for C.
There are syntax highlighting files (plugin), and regexes that can parse the gnu error lines so that clicking on a compile error jumps me to the offending source code line. But for Perl, I haven't bothered.
When I am working remotely on a Unix machine, I use FireFTP (plugin for Firefox) and just right click on the remote Perl file and open it locally in Textpad. I edit and then just hit "save" to send edits back to Unix and then use a command window to execute the program on Unix (typically just up-arrow, <ENTER>). So a "turn" is really fast. When working on SQLite DB projects, I use the SQL manager plug-in for Firefox - really convenient and easy.
Anyway this is another cheap way to go. $30 isn't free, but I've used this thing so many hours over the years, that I've gotten my money's worth!