Perl is beckoning me

06-21-2002, 05:16 PM
In the HTML forum I asked about setting up a super-simple intranet site here at my technically challenged workplace. On the super-simple site I want some data (displayed in HTML table cells) to be fed to the site from an application like Excel or Access. Nice folks round here told me ASP is the best way to do this.

Well, I'm not trying to take them on for saying that or anything, but I'm running into all sorts of bureaucratic crappicus round here to get ASP and PWS running on my little PC here. And frankly, I don't enjoy learning any more about Microsoft products. I want to be trained on the competition's stuff. I want to be part of whatever non-Microsoft trends there are out there. (uh-oh - does Microsoft have anything to do with Perl!?!?!??!)

See, four-to-six of us will enter data into the Access database; and some of this data will be fed into cells on the web page. Can I do this just with HTML and Perl? I've found a very attractive "Teach Yourself Perl in 21 Days" textbook from SAMS Publishing, which I'd like to make use of. Would I need to install a Perl compiler or some such thing? What other software do I need installed on my bureaucratically neglected PC here; will I still need PWS or IIS; or are there other (and preferably non-Microsoft) Web server products I can install more easily?

06-21-2002, 05:48 PM
I spent a couple of years using PERL (not sure why), anyways, it's up to you to learn what you want or even use.

I am of the opinion that if you are a VB programmer then ASP will come easier to you then PERL. If you had a hard time with pws then Perl is no picnic.

On a side note.... I can't understand why the anti-Microsoft sentiment. I have a lot to say on the subject, but I'll keep it to myself. :)a

06-21-2002, 05:53 PM
btw, get perl here

I change the url

06-21-2002, 06:31 PM
if you need a host to learn on then visit or

06-22-2002, 03:18 AM
Perl is the language, perl is the interpreter (I think I got them the right way around). Basically, you write your code in plain text, then it is run server side on a perl compliant server (any server that has a perl interpreter installed) and the otuput fed to the client.
I've been using it for a while now, as most CGI is written in Perl. It is perfectly capable of what you were wanting above. It might take you a bit longer to learn that if you were going to use ASP, but heck, its up to you.

06-22-2002, 12:47 PM
Perl/CGI would require a webserver like Apache. Perl can be used
as the script language in ASP if you install it on the windows PC
with IIS (which is already a big problem for you). So, you could
see if there is a version of Apache that runs on windows. The
biggest problem I see with all this is no good way to access the
data in either an Excel spreadsheet, or Access database. But you
can easily use Perl to access data in a flat text file.

06-22-2002, 03:30 PM
Perl can access data in a Access file, but I doubt it can create an instance of it.

Ijust puuled out some of my old Perl, it uses ODBC works on a Win2000 Server...

use Win32::ODBC;
$db = new Win32::ODBC("myDSN");
$query = "INSERT INTO Items VALUES ('$pcode', '$description', $price)";

06-24-2002, 03:27 PM
It seems that I may be able to download PWS from the Microsoft website; but there's no option for use Windows 2000 users. Should I get the 95, 98, NT4.0 version? Which one?


(feel free to reply to if this here vbforum isn't cooperating. It ain't doing so today, at least for ME.)

06-24-2002, 03:40 PM
If PWS is going to work on win2k, then the only chance would be
the NT4 version.

06-24-2002, 05:38 PM
Why are you downloading it? PWS is on the Win2k Pro CD.

Open the Control Panel, then Add/Remove Programs, then Add/Remove Windows Components. In that dialog put a check mark next to Internet Information Systems (IIS). That's it.

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