PAR::Dist - Create and manipulate PAR distributions


This document describes version 0.10 of PAR::Dist, released Jun 07, 2006.


As a shell command:

    % perl -MPAR::Dist -eblib_to_par

In programs:

    use PAR::Dist;
    my $dist = blib_to_par();   # make a PAR file using ./blib/
    install_par($dist);         # install it into the system
    uninstall_par($dist);       # uninstall it from the system
    sign_par($dist);            # sign it using Module::Signature
    verify_par($dist);          # verify it using Module::Signature
    install_par("";); # works too
    install_par("";); # auto-appends archname + perlver
    install_par("cpan://SMUELLER/PAR-0.91"); # uses CPAN author directory


This module creates and manipulates PAR distributions. They are architecture-specific PAR files, containing everything under blib/ of CPAN distributions after their make or Build stage, a META.yml describing metadata of the original CPAN distribution, and a MANIFEST detailing all files within it. Digitally signed PAR distributions will also contain a SIGNATURE file.

The naming convention for such distributions is:


For example, PAR-Dist-0.01-i386-freebsd-5.8.0.par corresponds to the 0.01 release of PAR-Dist on CPAN, built for perl 5.8.0 running on i386-freebsd.


Five functions are exported by default. They can take either a hash of named arguments, a single argument (taken as $path by blib_to_par and $dist by other functions), or no arguments (in which case the first PAR file in the current directory is used).

Therefore, under a directory containing only a single test.par, all invocations below are equivalent:

    % perl -MPAR::Dist -e"install_par( dist => 'test.par' )"
    % perl -MPAR::Dist -e"install_par( 'test.par' )"
    % perl -MPAR::Dist -einstall_par;

If $dist resembles a URL, LWP::Simple::mirror is called to mirror it locally under $ENV{PAR_TEMP} (or $TEMP/par/ if unspecified), and the function will act on the fetched local file instead. If the URL begins with cpan://AUTHOR/, it will be expanded automatically to the author's CPAN directory (e.g.

If $dist does not have a file extension beginning with a letter or underscore, a dash and $suffix ($ARCH-$PERL_VERSION.par by default) will be appended to it.


Takes key/value pairs as parameters or a single parameter indicating the path that contains the blib/ subdirectory.

Builds a PAR distribution from the blib/ subdirectory under path, or under the current directory if unspecified. If blib/ does not exist, it automatically runs Build, make, Build.PL or Makefile.PL to create it.

Returns the filename or the generated PAR distribution.

Valid parameters are:


Sets the path which contains the blib/ subdirectory from which the PAR distribution will be generated.

name, version, suffix

These attributes set the name, version platform specific suffix of the distribution. Name and version can be automatically determined from the distributions META.yml or Makefile.PL files.

The suffix is generated from your architecture name and your version of perl by default.


The output filename for the PAR distribution.


Installs a PAR distribution into the system, using ExtUtils::Install::install_default.


Uninstalls all previously installed contents of a PAR distribution, using ExtUtils::Install::uninstall.


Digitally sign a PAR distribution using gpg or Crypt::OpenPGP, via Module::Signature.


Verify the digital signature of a PAR distribution using gpg or Crypt::OpenPGP, via Module::Signature.

Returns a boolean value indicating whether verification passed; $! is set to the return code of Module::Signature::verify.


the PAR manpage, the ExtUtils::Install manpage, the Module::Signature manpage, the LWP::Simple manpage


Audrey Tang <>

PAR has a mailing list, <>, that you can write to; send an empty mail to <> to join the list and participate in the discussion.

Please send bug reports to <>.


Copyright 2003, 2004, 2006 by Audrey Tang <>.

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