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XML::RSS::Feed - Persistant XML RSS Encapsulation




A quick and dirty non-POE example that uses a blocking sleep. The magic is in the late_breaking_news method that returns only headlines it hasn't seen.

    use XML::RSS::Feed;
    use LWP::Simple qw(get);

    my $feed = XML::RSS::Feed->new(
        url    => "",
        name   => "jbisbee",
        delay  => 10,
        debug  => 1,
        tmpdir => "/tmp", # optional caching

    while (1) {
        print $_->headline . "\n" for $feed->late_breaking_news;

ATTENTION! - If you want a non-blocking way to watch multiple RSS sources with one process use POE::Component::RSSAggregator.

If you want to fetch a feed, mark all the headlines as seen, then get events for any new headlines, pass 'init_headlines_seen => 1' to the constructor.


XML::RSS::Feed->new( url => $url, name => $name )

Required Params
  • name

    Identifier and hash lookup key for the RSS feed.

  • url

    The URL of the RSS feed

Optional Params
  • delay

    Number of seconds between updates (defaults to 600)

  • tmpdir

    Directory to keep a cached feed (using Storable) to keep persistance between instances.

  • init_headlines_seen

    Mark all headlines as seen from the intial fetch, and only report new headlines that appear from that point forward.

  • debug

    Turn debuging on.

  • headline_as_id

    Boolean value to use the headline as the id when URL isn't unique within a feed.

  • hlobj

    A class name sublcassed from XML::RSS::Headline

  • max_headlines

    The max number of headlines to keep. (default is unlimited)


$feed->parse( $xml_string )

Pass in a xml string to parse with XML::RSS and then call process to process the results.

$feed->process( $items, $title )

$feed->process( $items )

Calls pre_process, process_items, post_process, title, and link methods to process the parsed results of an RSS XML feed.

  • $items

    An array of hash refs which will eventually become XML::RSS::Headline objects. Look at XML::RSS::Headline->new() for acceptable arguments.

  • $title

    The title of the RSS feed.

  • $link

    The RSS channel link (normally a URL back to the homepage) of the RSS feed.


Mark all headlines from previous run as seen.

$feed->process_items( $items )

Turn an array refs of hash refs into XML::RSS::Headline objects and added to the internal list of headlines.


Post process cleanup, cache headlines (if tmpdir), and debug messages.

$feed->create_headline( %args)

Create a new XML::RSS::Headline object and add it to the interal list. Check XML::RSS::Headline->new() for acceptable values for %args.


After fetching a feed for the first time, mark all headlines as seen so we don't generate a flood of events. Basically don't issue an event for any existing headlines, but for any headline from that point on.


Returns the number of headlines for the feed.

$feed->seen_headline( $id )

Just a boolean test to see if we've seen a headline or not.


Returns an array or array reference (based on context) of XML::RSS::Headline objects


Returns an array or the number of elements (based on context) of the latest XML::RSS::Headline objects.


If tmpdir is defined the rss info is cached.


$feed->set_last_updated( Time::HiRes::time )

Set the time of when the feed was last processed. If you pass in a value it will be used otherwise calls Time::HiRes::time.


The time (in epoch seconds) of when the feed was last processed.


The time (in epoch seconds and milliseconds) of when the feed was last processed.



$feed->title( $title )

The title of the RSS feed.


$feed->debug( $bool )

Turn on debugging messages


$feed->init( $bool )

init is used so that we just load the current headlines and don't return all headlines. in other words we initialize them. Takes a boolean argument.


$feed->name( $name )

The identifier of an RSS feed.


$feed->delay( $seconds )

Number of seconds between updates.

$feed->link( $rss_channel_url )

The url in the RSS feed with a link back to the site where the RSS feed came from.


$feed->url( $url )

The url in the RSS feed with a link back to the site where the RSS feed came from.


$feed->headline_as_id( $bool )

Within some RSS feeds the URL may not always be unique, in these cases you can use the headline as the unique id. The id is used to check whether or not a feed is new or has already been seen.


$feed->hlobj( $class )

Ablity to use a subclass of XML::RSS::Headline. (See Perl Jobs example in XML::RSS::Headline::PerlJobs). This should just be the name of the subclass.


$feed->tmpdir( $tmpdir )

Temporay directory to store cached RSS XML between instances for persistance.


$feed->init_headlines_seen( $bool )

Boolean value to mark all headlines as seen from the intial fetch, and only report new headlines that appear from that point forward.


$feed->max_headlines( $integer )

The maximum number of headlines you'd like to keep track of. (0 means infinate)



This should was deprecated because, the object shouldn't really know anything about fetching, it just processes the results. This method currently will always return false


This method was deprecated because, $feed->parse now returns a bool value. This method will always return false


Jeff Bisbee, <jbisbee at>


Please report any bugs or feature requests to bug-xml-rss-feed at, or through the web interface at I will be notified, and then you'll automatically be notified of progress on your bug as I make changes.


You can find documentation for this module with the perldoc command.

    perldoc XML::RSS::Feed

You can also look for information at:


Special thanks to Rocco Caputo, Martijn van Beers, Sean Burke, Prakash Kailasa and Randal Schwartz for their help, guidance, patience, and bug reports. Guys thanks for actually taking time to use the code and give good, honest feedback.

Thank for to Carl Fürstenberg for providing feedback for new constructor param of 'init_headlines_seen' so you won't get flooded with headlines on the first fetch of the feed.

Thanks to Slaven Rezić for pointing out that t/008_store_retrieve.t pointed to broken rss tests on (that I don't own anymore)

Thanks to Aaron Krowne for patch for XML::RSS::Headline to use guid as the unique id instead of url if its available.


Copyright 2006 Jeff Bisbee, all rights reserved.

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


XML::RSS::Headline, XML::RSS::Headline::PerlJobs, XML::RSS::Headline::Fark, XML::RSS::Headline::UsePerlJournals, POE::Component::RSSAggregator