Perl Support

Vile supports the use of Perl as an extension language by embedding a Perl interpreter into the editor.

The "--with-perl" configure option enables Perl support at build time on Unix hosts (for Win32 instructions see the file README.PC).

After the executable is successfully built, up to date documentation for the API in various formats may be obtained from the following make targets (not built by default):

    vile-perl-api.doc   (unix and win32)   (unix hosts only)
    vile-perl-api.html  (unix hosts only)

A recent version of Perl is required. The interface was developed and tested using 5.004_04. The most recent version of Perl may be retrieved from the URL:

The Perl interpreter requires subsidiary files, the location of which is coded into the Perl library. As such, if a Perl-enabled Vile binary is to be installed onto multiple machines, the same version of Perl must be installed on each target machine, in the same location.

This also means that if a newer version of Perl is installed, Vile must either be rebuilt against the new version, or the version-specific directory (given by "perl -V:archlib") of the old version must be retained.

Note also that embedding a Perl interpreter into Vile will increase the size of the binary. On many platforms, a shared Perl library may be built which, at the cost of a load-time performance penalty, can substantially reduce the size of the compiled vile, xvile, [nvi, apache, etc, ...] and of course perl binaries.

See also the output of "perl -V:useshrplib" and the section "Building a shared Perl library" in the "INSTALL" file from the Perl distribution.


The Perl interface for vile was originally written by Kevin Buettner in 1997 and 1998.