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Test::Kwalitee - Test the Kwalitee of a distribution before you release it


version 1.28


In a separate test file:

  use Test::More;
  use strict;
  use warnings;
      plan skip_all => 'these tests are for release candidate testing'
          unless $ENV{RELEASE_TESTING};

  use Test::Kwalitee 'kwalitee_ok';


Kwalitee is an automatically-measurable gauge of how good your software is. That's very different from quality, which a computer really can't measure in a general sense. (If you can, you've solved a hard problem in computer science.)

In the world of the CPAN, the CPANTS project (CPAN Testing Service; also a funny acronym on its own) measures Kwalitee with several metrics. If you plan to release a distribution to the CPAN -- or even within your own organization -- testing its Kwalitee before creating a release can help you improve your quality as well.

Test::Kwalitee and a short test file will do this for you automatically.


Create a test file as shown in the synopsis. Run it. It will run all of the potential Kwalitee tests on the current distribution, if possible. If any fail, it will report those as regular diagnostics.

If you ship this test, it will not run for anyone else, because of the RELEASE_TESTING guard. (You can omit this guard if you move the test to xt/release/, which is not run automatically by other users.)



With no arguments, runs all standard metrics.

To run only a handful of tests, pass their name(s) to the kwalitee_ok function:

  kwalitee_ok(qw( use_strict has_tests ));

To disable a test, pass its name with a leading minus (-):

  kwalitee_ok(qw( -use_strict has_readme ));


Previous versions of this module ran tests directly via the import sub, like so:

    use Test::Kwalitee;
    # and that's it!

...but this is problematic if you need to perform some setup first, as you would need to do that in a BEGIN block, or manually call import. This is messy!

However, this calling path is still available, e.g.:

  use Test::Kwalitee tests => [ qw( use_strict has_tests ) ];


The list of each available metric currently available on your system can be obtained with the kwalitee-metrics command (with descriptions, if you pass --verbose or -v, but as of Module::CPANTS::Analyse 0.97_03, the tests include:

  • has_abstract_in_pod

    Does the main module have a =head1 NAME section with a short description of the distribution?

  • has_buildtool

    Does the distribution have a build tool file?

  • has_changelog

    Does the distribution have a changelog?

  • has_humanreadable_license

    Is there a LICENSE section in documentation, and/or a LICENSE file present?

  • has_license_in_source_file

    Is there license information in any of the source files?

  • has_manifest

    Does the distribution have a MANIFEST?

  • has_meta_yml

    Does the distribution have a META.yml file?

  • has_readme

    Does the distribution have a README file?

  • has_tests

    Does the distribution have tests?

  • manifest_matches_dist

    Do the MANIFEST and distribution contents match?

  • meta_json_conforms_to_known_spec

    Does META.json conform to the recognised META.json specification? (For specs see CPAN::Meta::Spec)

  • meta_json_is_parsable

    Can the META.json be parsed?

  • meta_yml_conforms_to_known_spec

    Does META.yml conform to any recognised META.yml specification? (For specs see

  • meta_yml_is_parsable

    Can the META.yml be parsed?

  • no_broken_auto_install

    Is the distribution using an old version of Module::Install? Versions of Module::Install prior to 0.89 do not detect correctly that CPAN/CPANPLUS shell is used.

  • no_broken_module_install

    Does the distribution use an obsolete version of Module::Install? Versions of Module::Install prior to 0.61 might not work on some systems at all. Additionally if the Makefile.PL uses the auto_install() feature, you need at least version 0.64. Also, 1.04 is known to be broken.

  • no_symlinks

    Does the distribution have no symlinks?

  • use_strict

    Does the distribution files all use strict?


With thanks to CPANTS and Thomas Klausner, as well as test tester Chris Dolan.



Bugs may be submitted through the RT bug tracker (or

There is also a mailing list available for users of this distribution, at

There is also an irc channel available for users of this distribution, at #perl on


  • chromatic <>

  • Karen Etheridge <>


  • David Steinbrunner <>

  • Gavin Sherlock <>

  • Kenichi Ishigaki <>

  • Nathan Haigh <>

  • Zoffix Znet <>

  • Daniel Perrett <>


This software is copyright (c) 2005 by chromatic.

This is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the same terms as the Perl 5 programming language system itself.