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PERL Scripts

Since the version 3.2 release, FTOOLS has included a suite of PERL scripts. PERL has been adopted as the standard scripting language for use in the FTOOLS. To maximize portability, PERL 5.0 or above is recommended (and required for VMS, see Installation Guide). As described in the Installation Guide, unpatched versions of Perl5.001 may not work properly. If you experience problems with Perl FTOOLS, you may need to upgrade to a more recent version of Perl (version 5.002 as of this writing). The FTOOLS distribution includes a bin.perl/ directory where these scripts reside after the FTOOLS build is completed. If your system doesn't have PERL the scripts will call a dummy program called ``noperl'' which prints a blurb stating the scripts can't run. UNIX users who obtain perl at later time can change this with the script in bin.perl/. Simply set the environment variable PERL to the installed perl (with the full pathname) and then execute, with a wild card or specific script name. Assuming you're in bin.perl/ and using the csh, the commands would be:

>setenv PERL /some_full_pathname/perl

> *

This will fix all of the perl scripts in bin.perl/ to use the new perl. VMS users should consult their system manager for assistance after a perl installation.

To use the PERL scripts found in the bin.perl/ directory you must add the directory (full path) to your PATH environment variable. This is most easily accomplished using the mkftools script which is located in the directory of FTOOLS. The script will perform the analogous things for VMS users.

Lawrence Elwin Brown
Wed Aug 6 11:33:26 EDT 1997


If FTOOLS has been useful in your research, please reference this site ( and use the ASCL reference for HEASoft [ascl:1408.004] or the ASCL reference for the original FTOOLs paper [ascl:9912.002]:

Blackburn, J. K. 1995, in ASP Conf. Ser., Vol. 77, Astronomical Data Analysis Software and Systems IV, ed. R. A. Shaw, H. E. Payne, and J. J. E. Hayes (San Francisco: ASP), 367.

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