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Data::Dumper(3pm)		 Perl Programmers Reference Guide		Data::Dumper(3pm)

NAME
       Data::Dumper - stringified perl data structures, suitable for both printing and "eval"

SYNOPSIS
	   use Data::Dumper;

	   # simple procedural interface
	   print Dumper($foo, $bar);

	   # extended usage with names
	   print Data::Dumper->Dump([$foo, $bar], [qw(foo *ary)]);

	   # configuration variables
	   {
	     local $Data::Dump::Purity = 1;
	     eval Data::Dumper->Dump([$foo, $bar], [qw(foo *ary)]);
	   }

	   # OO usage
	   $d = Data::Dumper->new([$foo, $bar], [qw(foo *ary)]);
	      ...
	   print $d->Dump;
	      ...
	   $d->Purity(1)->Terse(1)->Deepcopy(1);
	   eval $d->Dump;

DESCRIPTION
       Given a list of scalars or reference variables, writes out their contents in perl syntax.
       The references can also be objects.  The contents of each variable is output in a single
       Perl statement.	Handles self-referential structures correctly.

       The return value can be "eval"ed to get back an identical copy of the original reference
       structure.

       Any references that are the same as one of those passed in will be named $VARn (where n is
       a numeric suffix), and other duplicate references to substructures within $VARn will be
       appropriately labeled using arrow notation.  You can specify names for individual values
       to be dumped if you use the "Dump()" method, or you can change the default $VAR prefix to
       something else.	See $Data::Dumper::Varname and $Data::Dumper::Terse below.

       The default output of self-referential structures can be "eval"ed, but the nested refer-
       ences to $VARn will be undefined, since a recursive structure cannot be constructed using
       one Perl statement.  You should set the "Purity" flag to 1 to get additional statements
       that will correctly fill in these references.

       In the extended usage form, the references to be dumped can be given user-specified names.
       If a name begins with a "*", the output will describe the dereferenced type of the sup-
       plied reference for hashes and arrays, and coderefs.  Output of names will be avoided
       where possible if the "Terse" flag is set.

       In many cases, methods that are used to set the internal state of the object will return
       the object itself, so method calls can be conveniently chained together.

       Several styles of output are possible, all controlled by setting the "Indent" flag.  See
       "Configuration Variables or Methods" below for details.

       Methods

       PACKAGE->new(ARRAYREF [, ARRAYREF])
	   Returns a newly created "Data::Dumper" object.  The first argument is an anonymous
	   array of values to be dumped.  The optional second argument is an anonymous array of
	   names for the values.  The names need not have a leading "$" sign, and must be com-
	   prised of alphanumeric characters.  You can begin a name with a "*" to specify that
	   the dereferenced type must be dumped instead of the reference itself, for ARRAY and
	   HASH references.

	   The prefix specified by $Data::Dumper::Varname will be used with a numeric suffix if
	   the name for a value is undefined.

	   Data::Dumper will catalog all references encountered while dumping the values. Cross-
	   references (in the form of names of substructures in perl syntax) will be inserted at
	   all possible points, preserving any structural interdependencies in the original set
	   of values.  Structure traversal is depth-first,  and proceeds in order from the first
	   supplied value to the last.

       $OBJ->Dump  or  PACKAGE->Dump(ARRAYREF [, ARRAYREF])
	   Returns the stringified form of the values stored in the object (preserving the order
	   in which they were supplied to "new"), subject to the configuration options below.  In
	   a list context, it returns a list of strings corresponding to the supplied values.

	   The second form, for convenience, simply calls the "new" method on its arguments
	   before dumping the object immediately.

       $OBJ->Seen([HASHREF])
	   Queries or adds to the internal table of already encountered references.  You must use
	   "Reset" to explicitly clear the table if needed.  Such references are not dumped;
	   instead, their names are inserted wherever they are encountered subsequently.  This is
	   useful especially for properly dumping subroutine references.

	   Expects an anonymous hash of name => value pairs.  Same rules apply for names as in
	   "new".  If no argument is supplied, will return the "seen" list of name => value
	   pairs, in a list context.  Otherwise, returns the object itself.

       $OBJ->Values([ARRAYREF])
	   Queries or replaces the internal array of values that will be dumped.  When called
	   without arguments, returns the values.  Otherwise, returns the object itself.

       $OBJ->Names([ARRAYREF])
	   Queries or replaces the internal array of user supplied names for the values that will
	   be dumped.  When called without arguments, returns the names.  Otherwise, returns the
	   object itself.

       $OBJ->Reset
	   Clears the internal table of "seen" references and returns the object itself.

       Functions

       Dumper(LIST)
	   Returns the stringified form of the values in the list, subject to the configuration
	   options below.  The values will be named $VARn in the output, where n is a numeric
	   suffix.  Will return a list of strings in a list context.

       Configuration Variables or Methods

       Several configuration variables can be used to control the kind of output generated when
       using the procedural interface.	These variables are usually "local"ized in a block so
       that other parts of the code are not affected by the change.

       These variables determine the default state of the object created by calling the "new"
       method, but cannot be used to alter the state of the object thereafter.	The equivalent
       method names should be used instead to query or set the internal state of the object.

       The method forms return the object itself when called with arguments, so that they can be
       chained together nicely.

       $Data::Dumper::Indent  or  $OBJ->Indent([NEWVAL])
	   Controls the style of indentation.  It can be set to 0, 1, 2 or 3.  Style 0 spews out-
	   put without any newlines, indentation, or spaces between list items.  It is the most
	   compact format possible that can still be called valid perl.  Style 1 outputs a read-
	   able form with newlines but no fancy indentation (each level in the structure is sim-
	   ply indented by a fixed amount of whitespace).  Style 2 (the default) outputs a very
	   readable form which takes into account the length of hash keys (so the hash value
	   lines up).  Style 3 is like style 2, but also annotates the elements of arrays with
	   their index (but the comment is on its own line, so array output consumes twice the
	   number of lines).  Style 2 is the default.

       $Data::Dumper::Purity  or  $OBJ->Purity([NEWVAL])
	   Controls the degree to which the output can be "eval"ed to recreate the supplied ref-
	   erence structures.  Setting it to 1 will output additional perl statements that will
	   correctly recreate nested references.  The default is 0.

       $Data::Dumper::Pad  or  $OBJ->Pad([NEWVAL])
	   Specifies the string that will be prefixed to every line of the output.  Empty string
	   by default.

       $Data::Dumper::Varname  or  $OBJ->Varname([NEWVAL])
	   Contains the prefix to use for tagging variable names in the output. The default is
	   "VAR".

       $Data::Dumper::Useqq  or  $OBJ->Useqq([NEWVAL])
	   When set, enables the use of double quotes for representing string values.  Whitespace
	   other than space will be represented as "[\n\t\r]", "unsafe" characters will be back-
	   slashed, and unprintable characters will be output as quoted octal integers.  Since
	   setting this variable imposes a performance penalty, the default is 0.  "Dump()" will
	   run slower if this flag is set, since the fast XSUB implementation doesn't support it
	   yet.

       $Data::Dumper::Terse  or  $OBJ->Terse([NEWVAL])
	   When set, Data::Dumper will emit single, non-self-referential values as atoms/terms
	   rather than statements.  This means that the $VARn names will be avoided where possi-
	   ble, but be advised that such output may not always be parseable by "eval".

       $Data::Dumper::Freezer  or  $OBJ->Freezer([NEWVAL])
	   Can be set to a method name, or to an empty string to disable the feature.
	   Data::Dumper will invoke that method via the object before attempting to stringify it.
	   This method can alter the contents of the object (if, for instance, it contains data
	   allocated from C), and even rebless it in a different package.  The client is respon-
	   sible for making sure the specified method can be called via the object, and that the
	   object ends up containing only perl data types after the method has been called.
	   Defaults to an empty string.

       $Data::Dumper::Toaster  or  $OBJ->Toaster([NEWVAL])
	   Can be set to a method name, or to an empty string to disable the feature.
	   Data::Dumper will emit a method call for any objects that are to be dumped using the
	   syntax "bless(DATA, CLASS)->METHOD()".  Note that this means that the method specified
	   will have to perform any modifications required on the object (like creating new state
	   within it, and/or reblessing it in a different package) and then return it.	The
	   client is responsible for making sure the method can be called via the object, and
	   that it returns a valid object.  Defaults to an empty string.

       $Data::Dumper::Deepcopy	or  $OBJ->Deepcopy([NEWVAL])
	   Can be set to a boolean value to enable deep copies of structures.  Cross-referencing
	   will then only be done when absolutely essential (i.e., to break reference cycles).
	   Default is 0.

       $Data::Dumper::Quotekeys  or  $OBJ->Quotekeys([NEWVAL])
	   Can be set to a boolean value to control whether hash keys are quoted.  A false value
	   will avoid quoting hash keys when it looks like a simple string.  Default is 1, which
	   will always enclose hash keys in quotes.

       $Data::Dumper::Bless  or  $OBJ->Bless([NEWVAL])
	   Can be set to a string that specifies an alternative to the "bless" builtin operator
	   used to create objects.  A function with the specified name should exist, and should
	   accept the same arguments as the builtin.  Default is "bless".

       $Data::Dumper::Maxdepth	or  $OBJ->Maxdepth([NEWVAL])
	   Can be set to a positive integer that specifies the depth beyond which which we don't
	   venture into a structure.  Has no effect when "Data::Dumper::Purity" is set.  (Useful
	   in debugger when we often don't want to see more than enough).  Default is 0, which
	   means there is no maximum depth.

       $Data::Dumper::Useperl  or  $OBJ->Useperl([NEWVAL])
	   Can be set to a boolean value which controls whether the pure Perl implementation of
	   "Data::Dumper" is used. The "Data::Dumper" module is a dual implementation, with
	   almost all functionality written in both pure Perl and also in XS ('C'). Since the XS
	   version is much faster, it will always be used if possible. This option lets you over-
	   ride the default behavior, usually for testing purposes only. Default is 0, which
	   means the XS implementation will be used if possible.

       $Data::Dumper::Sortkeys	or  $OBJ->Sortkeys([NEWVAL])
	   Can be set to a boolean value to control whether hash keys are dumped in sorted order.
	   A true value will cause the keys of all hashes to be dumped in Perl's default sort
	   order. Can also be set to a subroutine reference which will be called for each hash
	   that is dumped. In this case "Data::Dumper" will call the subroutine once for each
	   hash, passing it the reference of the hash. The purpose of the subroutine is to return
	   a reference to an array of the keys that will be dumped, in the order that they should
	   be dumped. Using this feature, you can control both the order of the keys, and which
	   keys are actually used. In other words, this subroutine acts as a filter by which you
	   can exclude certain keys from being dumped. Default is 0, which means that hash keys
	   are not sorted.

       $Data::Dumper::Deparse  or  $OBJ->Deparse([NEWVAL])
	   Can be set to a boolean value to control whether code references are turned into perl
	   source code. If set to a true value, "B::Deparse" will be used to get the source of
	   the code reference. Using this option will force using the Perl implementation of the
	   dumper, since the fast XSUB implementation doesn't support it.

	   Caution : use this option only if you know that your coderefs will be properly recon-
	   structed by "B::Deparse".

       Exports

       Dumper

EXAMPLES
       Run these code snippets to get a quick feel for the behavior of this module.  When you are
       through with these examples, you may want to add or change the various configuration vari-
       ables described above, to see their behavior.  (See the testsuite in the Data::Dumper dis-
       tribution for more examples.)

	   use Data::Dumper;

	   package Foo;
	   sub new {bless {'a' => 1, 'b' => sub { return "foo" }}, $_[0]};

	   package Fuz; 		      # a weird REF-REF-SCALAR object
	   sub new {bless \($_ = \ 'fu\'z'), $_[0]};

	   package main;
	   $foo = Foo->new;
	   $fuz = Fuz->new;
	   $boo = [ 1, [], "abcd", \*foo,
		    {1 => 'a', 023 => 'b', 0x45 => 'c'},
		    \\"p\q\'r", $foo, $fuz];

	   ########
	   # simple usage
	   ########

	   $bar = eval(Dumper($boo));
	   print($@) if $@;
	   print Dumper($boo), Dumper($bar);  # pretty print (no array indices)

	   $Data::Dumper::Terse = 1;	      # don't output names where feasible
	   $Data::Dumper::Indent = 0;	      # turn off all pretty print
	   print Dumper($boo), "\n";

	   $Data::Dumper::Indent = 1;	      # mild pretty print
	   print Dumper($boo);

	   $Data::Dumper::Indent = 3;	      # pretty print with array indices
	   print Dumper($boo);

	   $Data::Dumper::Useqq = 1;	      # print strings in double quotes
	   print Dumper($boo);

	   ########
	   # recursive structures
	   ########

	   @c = ('c');
	   $c = \@c;
	   $b = {};
	   $a = [1, $b, $c];
	   $b->{a} = $a;
	   $b->{b} = $a->[1];
	   $b->{c} = $a->[2];
	   print Data::Dumper->Dump([$a,$b,$c], [qw(a b c)]);

	   $Data::Dumper::Purity = 1;	      # fill in the holes for eval
	   print Data::Dumper->Dump([$a, $b], [qw(*a b)]); # print as @a
	   print Data::Dumper->Dump([$b, $a], [qw(*b a)]); # print as %b

	   $Data::Dumper::Deepcopy = 1;       # avoid cross-refs
	   print Data::Dumper->Dump([$b, $a], [qw(*b a)]);

	   $Data::Dumper::Purity = 0;	      # avoid cross-refs
	   print Data::Dumper->Dump([$b, $a], [qw(*b a)]);

	   ########
	   # deep structures
	   ########

	   $a = "pearl";
	   $b = [ $a ];
	   $c = { 'b' => $b };
	   $d = [ $c ];
	   $e = { 'd' => $d };
	   $f = { 'e' => $e };
	   print Data::Dumper->Dump([$f], [qw(f)]);

	   $Data::Dumper::Maxdepth = 3;       # no deeper than 3 refs down
	   print Data::Dumper->Dump([$f], [qw(f)]);

	   ########
	   # object-oriented usage
	   ########

	   $d = Data::Dumper->new([$a,$b], [qw(a b)]);
	   $d->Seen({'*c' => $c});	      # stash a ref without printing it
	   $d->Indent(3);
	   print $d->Dump;
	   $d->Reset->Purity(0);	      # empty the seen cache
	   print join "----\n", $d->Dump;

	   ########
	   # persistence
	   ########

	   package Foo;
	   sub new { bless { state => 'awake' }, shift }
	   sub Freeze {
	       my $s = shift;
	       print STDERR "preparing to sleep\n";
	       $s->{state} = 'asleep';
	       return bless $s, 'Foo::ZZZ';
	   }

	   package Foo::ZZZ;
	   sub Thaw {
	       my $s = shift;
	       print STDERR "waking up\n";
	       $s->{state} = 'awake';
	       return bless $s, 'Foo';
	   }

	   package Foo;
	   use Data::Dumper;
	   $a = Foo->new;
	   $b = Data::Dumper->new([$a], ['c']);
	   $b->Freezer('Freeze');
	   $b->Toaster('Thaw');
	   $c = $b->Dump;
	   print $c;
	   $d = eval $c;
	   print Data::Dumper->Dump([$d], ['d']);

	   ########
	   # symbol substitution (useful for recreating CODE refs)
	   ########

	   sub foo { print "foo speaking\n" }
	   *other = \&foo;
	   $bar = [ \&other ];
	   $d = Data::Dumper->new([\&other,$bar],['*other','bar']);
	   $d->Seen({ '*foo' => \&foo });
	   print $d->Dump;

	   ########
	   # sorting and filtering hash keys
	   ########

	   $Data::Dumper::Sortkeys = \&my_filter;
	   my $foo = { map { (ord, "$_$_$_") } 'I'..'Q' };
	   my $bar = { %$foo };
	   my $baz = { reverse %$foo };
	   print Dumper [ $foo, $bar, $baz ];

	   sub my_filter {
	       my ($hash) = @_;
	       # return an array ref containing the hash keys to dump
	       # in the order that you want them to be dumped
	       return [
		 # Sort the keys of %$foo in reverse numeric order
		   $hash eq $foo ? (sort {$b <=> $a} keys %$hash) :
		 # Only dump the odd number keys of %$bar
		   $hash eq $bar ? (grep {$_ % 2} keys %$hash) :
		 # Sort keys in default order for all other hashes
		   (sort keys %$hash)
	       ];
	   }

BUGS
       Due to limitations of Perl subroutine call semantics, you cannot pass an array or hash.
       Prepend it with a "\" to pass its reference instead.  This will be remedied in time, now
       that Perl has subroutine prototypes.  For now, you need to use the extended usage form,
       and prepend the name with a "*" to output it as a hash or array.

       "Data::Dumper" cheats with CODE references.  If a code reference is encountered in the
       structure being processed (and if you haven't set the "Deparse" flag), an anonymous sub-
       routine that contains the string '"DUMMY"' will be inserted in its place, and a warning
       will be printed if "Purity" is set.  You can "eval" the result, but bear in mind that the
       anonymous sub that gets created is just a placeholder.  Someday, perl will have a switch
       to cache-on-demand the string representation of a compiled piece of code, I hope.  If you
       have prior knowledge of all the code refs that your data structures are likely to have,
       you can use the "Seen" method to pre-seed the internal reference table and make the dumped
       output point to them, instead.  See EXAMPLES above.

       The "Useqq" and "Deparse" flags makes Dump() run slower, since the XSUB implementation
       does not support them.

       SCALAR objects have the weirdest looking "bless" workaround.

AUTHOR
       Gurusamy Sarathy        gsar@activestate.com

       Copyright (c) 1996-98 Gurusamy Sarathy. All rights reserved.  This program is free soft-
       ware; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the same terms as Perl itself.

VERSION
       Version 2.12   (unreleased)

SEE ALSO
       perl(1)

perl v5.8.0				    2002-06-01				Data::Dumper(3pm)
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