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Module::Provision - Create Perl distributions with VCS and selectable toolchain


This documents version v0.42.$Rev: 1 $ of Module::Provision


   # To reduce typing define a shell alias
   alias mp='module-provision --base ~/Projects'

   # Create a new distribution in your Projects directory with Git VCS
   mp dist Foo::Bar 'Optional one line abstract'

   # Add another module
   cd ~/Projects/Foo-Bar
   mp module Foo::Bat 'Optional one line abstract'

   # Add a program to the bin directory
   mp program bar-cli 'Optional one line abstract'

   # Add another test script
   mp test 11another-one.t

   # Edit the project master file
   mp -q edit_project

   # Regenerate meta data files
   mp metadata

   # Update the version numbers of the project files
   mp update_version 0.1 0.2

   # Stateful setting of the current working branch
   mp set_branch <branch_name>

   # Command line help
   mp -? | -H | -h [sub-command] | list_methods | dump_self


Module::Provision is used to create a skeletal CPAN distribution, including basic builder scripts, tests, documentation, and module code. It creates a VCS repository and, with Git as the VCS, installs some hooks that mimic the RCS Revision keyword expansion

On first use the directory ~/.module_provision is created and populated with templates and an index file index.json. The author name, id, and email are derived from the system (the environment variables AUTHOR and EMAIL take precedence). They can be overridden by the values in the configuration file ~/.module_provision/module_provision.json

If the default builder (MB) is used, then the project file Build.PL loads inc::Bob which instantiates an inline subclass of Module::Build. The code for the subclass is in inc::SubClass. The file inc::CPANTesting allows for fine grained control over which tests are run by which CPAN Testing smokers

The default builder used by the create distribution method can be changed from the command line or from the configuration file

If the Git VCS is used precommit and commit-msg hooks are installed. The precommit hook will expand the RCS Revision keyword in files on the master branch if the file .distribution_name.rev exists in the parent of the working tree. The precommit hook will also update the version number and date/time stamp in the change log (Changes). The commit-msg hook will extract the first comment line from the change log and use it as the commit message header. The remainder of the commit message (if any) is used as the commit message body. This means that so long as one detail line is added to the change log no other commit message text is required. The following makes for a suitable git log alias:

   alias gl='git log -5 --pretty=format:"%h %ci %s" | \
      cut -d" " -f1-3,5- | cut -c1-79'

The default VCS used by the create distribution methods can be changed from the command line or from the configuration file

The templates contain comment lines like:

   # @(#)Ident: 2013-04-15 13:52 pjf ;

These are expanded automatically by Emacs using this Lisp code:

   (setq time-stamp-active     t
         time-stamp-line-limit 10
         time-stamp-format     " %f %04y-%02m-%02d %02H:%02M %u "
         time-stamp-start      "Ident:"
         time-stamp-time-zone  "UTC"
         time-stamp-end        ";")

The alias:

   alias ident='ack "@\(#\)"'

uses the App::Ack program to implement the old SYSV R4 ident command

The templates for the project files dist.ini, Build.PL, and Makefile.PL contain the following comments which are interpreted by Emacs:

   # Local Variables:
   # mode: perl
   # eval: (load-project-state "[% appdir %]")
   # tab-title: [% project %]
   # tab-width: 3
   # End:

Perl mode is preferred over C-Perl mode since the former has better syntax highlighting. Tabs are expanded to three spaces. The tab-title variable is used by Yakuake::Sessions to set the tab title for the terminal emulator. The load-project-state Lisp looks like this:

   (defun load-project-state (state-file) "Recovers the TinyDesk state from file"
      (let ((session-path (concat "~/.emacs.d/config/state." state-file)))
         (if (file-exists-p session-path) (tinydesk-recover-state session-path)
            (message (concat "Not found: " state-file)))))

It assumes that the TinyDesk state file containing the list of files to edit for the project has been saved in ~/.emacs.d/config/state.[% appdir %]. To work on a project; change directory to the working copy, edit the project file Build.PL with Emacs, this will load all of the other files in the project into separate buffers displaying each in the tab bar. This Lisp code will load TinyDesk and turn tab bar mode on whenever a Perl file is edited:

   (add-hook 'perl-mode-hook
             '(lambda ()
                (require 'fic-mode) (turn-on-fic-mode) (diminish 'fic-mode nil)
                (require 'psvn) (require 'tinydesk) (tabbar-mode t)
                (require 'tinyperl) (diminish 'tinyperl-mode nil)))

This Lisp code will do likewise when a dist.ini file is edited:

   (add-hook 'conf-windows-mode-hook
             '(lambda ()
                (require 'tinydesk) (tabbar-mode t)))

Configuration and Environment

The configuration file defaults to ~/.module_provision/module_provision.json. All of the attributes listed in Module::Provision::Config can be set from the configuration file in addition to the attributes listed in Class::Usul::Config::Programs and Class::Usul::Config. A typical file looks like;

      "author": "<first_name> <last_name>",
      "author_email": "<userid>",
      "author_id": "<userid>",
      "base": "/home/<userid>/Projects",
      "doc_title": "Perl",
      "editor": "emacs",
      "home_page": ""

Creating logs and tmp directories in ~/.module_provision will cause the log and temporary files to use them instead of /tmp

Extends Module::Provision::Base. Applies these traits; AddingFiles, CreatingDistributions, Rendering, UpdatingContent, and VCS

This class defines no attributes



   module-provision cpan_upload <optional_version_number>

By default uploads the projects current distribution to CPAN


   module-provision delete_cpan_files v0.1.1

Deletes a specified version of the projects distributions from CPAN


   module-provision dist Foo::Bar <'Optional one line abstract'>

Create a new distribution specified by the module name on the command line


   module-provision dump_stash

Dump the hash ref used to render a template


   module-provision -q edit_project

Edit the project file (one of; dist.ini, Build.PL, or Makefile.PL) in the project directory. The editor defaults to emacs but can be set on the command line, e.g -o editor=vim


   module-provision metadata

Generates the distribution metadata files


   module-provision init_templates

Initialise the .module_provision directory and create the index.json file


   module-provision module Foo::Bat <'Optional one line abstract'>

Creates a new module specified by the class name on the command line


   module-provision program bar-cli <'Optional one line abstract'>

Creates a new program specified by the program name on the command line


   module-provision prereq_diffs

Displays a report showing which pre-requisite modules should be added to, removed from, or updated in the project file


   module-provision prove

Runs the projects tests


   cd $(module_provision -q select_project 3>&1 1>/dev/tty 2>/dev/null)

Displays a list of available projects. Calls edit_project on the selected option


   module-provision set_branch <branch_name>

Persistently sets the branch name used on this project. If branch_name is omitted defaults to the branch name appropriate for the VCS being used. Edits the currently selected editor's state file for the project to reflect the changing pathnames


   module-provision set_cpan_password <your_PAUSE_server_password>

Sets the password used to connect to the PAUSE server. Once used the command line program cpan-upload will not work since it cannot decrypt the password in the configuration file ~/.pause


   module-provision -q show_tab_title

Print the tab title for the current project. Can be used like this;

   alias ep='mp -q edit_project ; \
      yakuake_session set_tab_title_for_project $(mp -q show_tab_title)'


   module-provision test 11another-one.t

Creates a new test specified by the test file name on the command line

   module-provision update_copyright_year 2013 2014

Substitutes the existing copyright year for the new copyright year in all files in the MANIFEST


   module-provision update_version 0.1 0.2

Substitutes the existing version number for the new version number in all files in the MANIFEST. Prompts for the major/minor and bump if the version numbers are not provided


The pod coverage test falsely triggers on this module if this entry is removed. Caused by adding around select_method to Module::Provision::TraitFor::Badges


Add -D to command line to turn on debug output




There are no known incompatibilities in this module

Bugs and Limitations

There are no known bugs in this module. Please report problems to Source code is on Github git:// Patches and pull requests are welcome


Larry Wall - For the Perl programming language

Module::Starter - For some of the documentation and tests


Peter Flanigan, <>

License and Copyright

Copyright (c) 2017 Peter Flanigan. All rights reserved

This program is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the same terms as Perl itself. See perlartistic

This program is distributed in the hope that it will be useful, but WITHOUT WARRANTY; without even the implied warranty of MERCHANTABILITY or FITNESS FOR A PARTICULAR PURPOSE