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1=head1 NAME
2
d3dc607d 3perl583delta - what is new for perl v5.8.3
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4
5=head1 DESCRIPTION
6
7This document describes differences between the 5.8.2 release and
8the 5.8.3 release.
9
10If you are upgrading from an earlier release such as 5.6.1, first read
11the L<perl58delta>, which describes differences between 5.6.0 and
125.8.0, and the L<perl581delta> and L<perl582delta>, which describe differences
13between 5.8.0, 5.8.1 and 5.8.2
14
15=head1 Incompatible Changes
16
17There are no changes incompatible with 5.8.2.
18
19=head1 Core Enhancements
20
21A C<SCALAR> method is now available for tied hashes. This is called when
22a tied hash is used in scalar context, such as
23
24 if (%tied_hash) {
25 ...
26 }
27
28
29The old behaviour was that %tied_hash would return whatever would have been
30returned for that hash before the hash was tied (so usually 0). The new
31behaviour in the absence of a SCALAR method is to return TRUE if in the
32middle of an C<each> iteration, and otherwise call FIRSTKEY to check if the
33hash is empty (making sure that a subsequent C<each> will also begin by
34calling FIRSTKEY). Please see L<perltie/SCALAR> for the full details and
35caveats.
36
37=head1 Modules and Pragmata
38
39=over 4
40
41=item CGI
42
43=item Cwd
44
45=item Digest
46
47=item Digest::MD5
48
49=item Encode
50
51=item File::Spec
52
53=item FindBin
54
55A function C<again> is provided to resolve problems where modules in different
56directories wish to use FindBin.
57
58=item List::Util
59
60You can now weaken references to read only values.
61
62=item Math::BigInt
63
64=item PodParser
65
66=item Pod::Perldoc
67
68=item POSIX
69
70=item Unicode::Collate
71
72=item Unicode::Normalize
73
74=item Test::Harness
75
76=item threads::shared
77
78C<cond_wait> has a new two argument form. C<cond_timedwait> has been added.
79
80=back
81
82=head1 Utility Changes
83
84C<find2perl> now assumes C<-print> as a default action. Previously, it
85needed to be specified explicitly.
86
87A new utility, C<prove>, makes it easy to run an individual regression test
88at the command line. C<prove> is part of Test::Harness, which users of earlier
89Perl versions can install from CPAN.
90
91=head1 New Documentation
92
93The documentation has been revised in places to produce more standard manpages.
94
95The documentation for the special code blocks (BEGIN, CHECK, INIT, END)
96has been improved.
97
98=head1 Installation and Configuration Improvements
99
100Perl now builds on OpenVMS I64
101
102=head1 Selected Bug Fixes
103
104Using substr() on a UTF8 string could cause subsequent accesses on that
105string to return garbage. This was due to incorrect UTF8 offsets being
106cached, and is now fixed.
107
108join() could return garbage when the same join() statement was used to
109process 8 bit data having earlier processed UTF8 data, due to the flags
110on that statement's temporary workspace not being reset correctly. This
111is now fixed.
112
113C<$a .. $b> will now work as expected when either $a or $b is C<undef>
114
115Using Unicode keys with tied hashes should now work correctly.
116
117Reading $^E now preserves $!. Previously, the C code implementing $^E
118did not preserve C<errno>, so reading $^E could cause C<errno> and therefore
119C<$!> to change unexpectedly.
120
121Reentrant functions will (once more) work with C++. 5.8.2 introduced a bugfix
122which accidentally broke the compilation of Perl extensions written in C++
123
124=head1 New or Changed Diagnostics
125
126The fatal error "DESTROY created new reference to dead object" is now
127documented in L<perldiag>.
128
129=head1 Changed Internals
130
131The hash code has been refactored to reduce source duplication. The
132external interface is unchanged, and aside from the bug fixes described
133above, there should be no change in behaviour.
134
135C<hv_clear_placeholders> is now part of the perl API
136
137Some C macros have been tidied. In particular macros which create temporary
138local variables now name these variables more defensively, which should
139avoid bugs where names clash.
140
141<signal.h> is now always included.
142
143=head1 Configuration and Building
144
145C<Configure> now invokes callbacks regardless of the value of the variable
146they are called for. Previously callbacks were only invoked in the
147C<case $variable $define)> branch. This change should only affect platform
148maintainers writing configuration hints files.
149
150=head1 Platform Specific Problems
151
152The regression test ext/threads/shared/t/wait.t fails on early RedHat 9
153and HP-UX 10.20 due to bugs in their threading implementations.
154RedHat users should see https://rhn.redhat.com/errata/RHBA-2003-136.html
155and consider upgrading their glibc.
156
157=head1 Known Problems
158
159Detached threads aren't supported on Windows yet, as they may lead to
160memory access violation problems.
161
162There is a known race condition opening scripts in C<suidperl>. C<suidperl>
163is neither built nor installed by default, and has been deprecated since
164perl 5.8.0. You are advised to replace use of suidperl with tools such
165as sudo ( http://www.courtesan.com/sudo/ )
166
167We have a backlog of unresolved bugs. Dealing with bugs and bug reports
168is unglamorous work; not something ideally suited to volunteer labour,
169but that is all that we have.
170
171The perl5 development team are implementing changes to help address this
172problem, which should go live in early 2004.
173
174=head1 Future Directions
175
176Code freeze for the next maintenance release (5.8.4) is on March 31st 2004,
177with release expected by mid April. Similarly 5.8.5's freeze will be at
178the end of June, with release by mid July.
179
180=head1 Obituary
181
d3dc607d 182Iain 'Spoon' Truskett, Perl hacker, author of L<perlreref> and
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183contributor to CPAN, died suddenly on 29th December 2003, aged 24.
184He will be missed.
185
186=head1 Reporting Bugs
187
188If you find what you think is a bug, you might check the articles
189recently posted to the comp.lang.perl.misc newsgroup and the perl
190bug database at http://bugs.perl.org. There may also be
191information at http://www.perl.org, the Perl Home Page.
192
193If you believe you have an unreported bug, please run the B<perlbug>
194program included with your release. Be sure to trim your bug down
195to a tiny but sufficient test case. Your bug report, along with the
196output of C<perl -V>, will be sent off to perlbug@perl.org to be
197analysed by the Perl porting team. You can browse and search
198the Perl 5 bugs at http://bugs.perl.org/
199
200=head1 SEE ALSO
201
202The F<Changes> file for exhaustive details on what changed.
203
204The F<INSTALL> file for how to build Perl.
205
206The F<README> file for general stuff.
207
208The F<Artistic> and F<Copying> files for copyright information.
209
210=cut