Course Description

Perl is a scripting language which allows for rapid prototyping of projects formerly done with a programming language or a shell. It incorporates all the functionality of C (including a UNIX system interface), the Shells, grep, sed, and awk. The topics in the course will aid all computer users – from end user to programmer to administrator alike.



4 days


Target Audience

This course is for programmers, end users, system administrators, network administrators, CGI script writers, or anybody who is interested in automating tasks but doesn’t want to learn all the details of a full blown programming language.


Course Prerequisites

Students should have some experience with either a programming language (preferably C), or any of the UNIX shells. These skills are taught in the following courses:

If you have any questions or doubts as to whether you meet the pre-requisites for this course, or indeed are wondering which course best suits you, please consult with us to discuss your suitability for course attendance.


Suggested Follow on Courses

There are a number of options of suitable follow-on courses, depending on your business needs. Please contact us for further details.


Course Content

Chapter 1: Getting Started with Perl

What is Perl?

Where Can I Get Perl?

A Simple Perl Program

Simple I/O

Perl Variables

Control Flow – Decisions

Control Flow – Loops

Altering Loop Control Flow

Statement Modifiers

What Is True And What Is False?

The Special Variable $_

Chapter 2: Perl Operators


Table Of Perl Operators

Arithmetic Operators

String Operators

Relational Operators

Logical Operators

Bitwise Operators

Assignment Operators

The Conditional Operator

Range Operator

String Functions

The eval Function

Chapter 3: I/O


String Literals

The print Function

Here Documents

The printf Function

The sprintf Function


Opening Disk Files

File Open Errors

The die and warn Functions

File Operators

Chapter 4: Arrays

Basic Concepts

Assigning Values To An Array

Accessing Array Elements

Array Functions

push and pop


sort, reverse, and chop

split and join



Command Line Arguments

Chapter 5: Associative Arrays

Basic Concepts

Associative Array Functions

Updating Associative Arrays

Accessing Environment Variables

Chapter 6: Subroutines

Calling Subroutines

Passing Arguments to Subroutines

Returning Values from Subroutines

The require Function

Packages and Modules

The @INC Array

Predefined Subroutines

Comparison Subroutines for Sorting

Chapter 7: Pattern Matching and Regular Expressions


Regular Expression Syntax

The Match Operator

Regular Expression Meta-Characters


Single Character Matches

Some Special Issues

Character Classes

Multiple Character Matches


The Substitution Operator

The Translation Operator

Chapter 8: Accessing System Resources


File and Directory System Calls

The stat Function

The utime Function

The fork Function

The exec and wait Functions

Handling Signals

The system Function

Command Substitution

Opening Pipe Files

Chapter 9: Generating Reports with Perl


Formatting Examples

Multi-Line Values

Multi-Line Text Blocks

Sending a Report to a File

The select Function

The Special Variable $~

Top-of-Page Formats

Bottom-of-Page Formats

A Sample Report

Chapter 10: Perl and CGI

What is CGI?

Web Servers and Browsers


HTML Forms

Form Elements

A Typical CGI Application

CGI Input

CGI Output

Using the Module

CGI Environment Variables

Also Discussed:

Command Line Options and Debugging

Running Perl on the Command Line

Summary of Command Line Options

The Perl Debugger

Perl Debugger Commands

Other Debugging Aids

The strict Module

More About Regular Expressions

Remembered Matches

Greedy Regular Expressions

Nested Remembered Patterns

Matching for Multiple Occurrences in a Loop

References and Data Structures


Syntactic Sugar

Anonymous Arrays

Higher Dimensional Arrays

References and Subroutines

Comparing Perl 4 and 5




Advanced Perl

What is in the Advanced Perl Course

A Taste of Object Orientation

A Taste of Network Programming

Perl Development Using Eclipse

Features of the Perl Plugin

Creating a Perl Project

Running a Perl Program

Preferences – EPIC

Preferences – Editor

Preferences – Content Assist

Preferences – Folding

Preferences – Mark Occurrences

Preferences – Templates


Preferences – Source Formatter

Preferences – Task Tags

Accessing Perl Documentation

Project Properties


Testing Regular Expressions


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