Apache::RequestNotes - pass form and cookie data around in pnotes



  PerlInitHandler Apache::RequestNotes
  PerlSetVar MaxPostSize 1024
  PerlSetVar DisableUploads On

  MaxPostSize is in bytes and defaults to 1024, thus is optional.
  DisableUploads defaults to On, and likewise is optional.


Apache::RequestNotes provides a simple interface allowing all phases of the request cycle access to cookie or form input parameters in a consistent manner. Behind the scenes, it uses libapreq functions to parse request data and puts references to the data objects in pnotes.



  PerlInitHandler Apache::RequestNotes

some Perl*Handler or Registry script:

  my $input      = $r->pnotes('INPUT');   # Apache::Table reference
  my $uploads    = $r->pnotes('UPLOADS'); # Apache::Upload array ref
  my $cookies    = $r->pnotes('COOKIES'); # hash reference
  # GET and POST data
  my $foo        = $input->get('foo');

  # uploaded files
  foreach my $upload (@$uploads) {
    my $name     = $upload->name'
    my $fh       = $upload->fh;
    my $size     = $upload->size;

  # cookie data
  my $bar        = $cookies->{'bar'};

After using Apache::RequestNotes: o $cookies contains a reference to a hash with the names and values of all cookies sent back to your domain and path.

  o $input contains a reference to an Apache::Table object and can be
    accessed via Apache::Table methods - if a form contains both GET
    and POST data, both are available via $input.

  o $uploads contains a reference to an array containing all the
    Apache::Upload objects for the request, which can be used to
    access uploaded file information.

Once Apache::RequestNotes has been called, all other phases can have access to the form input and cookie data without parsing it themselves. This relieves some strain, especially when the GET or POST data is required by numerous handlers along the way.


It should be noted that Apache::Request 0.3103 and above now offers the Apache::Request->instance() method, which offers the ability to access the same Apache::Request object over and over again. While the availability of instance() does absorb the problems that prompted Apache::RequestNotes, namely the ability to read from POST more than once, you still have to parse the various data yourself. Thus, the utility of Apache::RequestNotes is now simply the ability to have a common API for all your handlers to use.

Apache::RequestNotes can really be called from just about any request phase. Thus, if you need to postpone data parsing until after uri translation, using RequestNotes as a PerlFixupHandler should work just fine. Keep in mind that Apache::RequestNotes returns OK, which would preclude it's use in conjuction with other PerlTransHandlers and PerlTypeHandlers (but it doesn't really belong there anyway).

MaxPostSize applies to file uploads as well as POST data, so if you plan on uploading files bigger than 1K, you will need to the override the default value.

$Apache::RequestNotes:err is set if libapreq reports a problem parsing the form data, thus it can be used to verify whether $input and $uploads contain valid objects. Apache::RequestNotes will _not_ return SERVER_ERROR in the event libapreq encounters an error. This may change in future releases.

Verbose debugging is enabled by setting the variable $Apache::RequestNotes::DEBUG to 1 or greater. To turn off all debug information, set your apache LogLevel above info level.

This is alpha software, and as such has not been tested on multiple platforms or environments. It requires PERL_INIT=1, PERL_LOG_API=1, and maybe other hooks to function properly. Doug MacEachern's libapreq is also required - you can get it from CPAN under the Apache tree.


Since POST data cannot be read more than once per request, it is improper to both use this module and try to gather form data again via or by reading it yourself from a cgi script or handler later in the request cycle. Unlike versions of RequestNotes prior to 0.06, however, you can call Apache::Request->instance($r) without impunity - Apache::Request->new($r) is off limits, though.


perl(1), mod_perl(1), Apache(3), Apache::Request(3), libapreq(1), Apache::Table(3)


Geoffrey Young <>


Copyright (c) 2000, Geoffrey Young. All rights reserved.

This module is free software. It may be used, redistributed and/or modified under the same terms as Perl itself.