NAME

    FFI::Platypus - Write Perl bindings to non-Perl libraries with FFI. No
    XS required.

VERSION

    version 1.58

SYNOPSIS

     use FFI::Platypus 1.00;
     
     # for all new code you should use api => 1
     my $ffi = FFI::Platypus->new( api => 1 );
     $ffi->lib(undef); # search libc
     
     # call dynamically
     $ffi->function( puts => ['string'] => 'int' )->call("hello world");
     
     # attach as a xsub and call (much faster)
     $ffi->attach( puts => ['string'] => 'int' );
     puts("hello world");

DESCRIPTION

    Platypus is a library for creating interfaces to machine code libraries
    written in languages like C, C++, Go, Fortran, Rust, Pascal.
    Essentially anything that gets compiled into machine code. This
    implementation uses libffi <https://sourceware.org/libffi/> to
    accomplish this task. libffi is battle tested by a number of other
    scripting and virtual machine languages, such as Python and Ruby to
    serve a similar role. There are a number of reasons why you might want
    to write an extension with Platypus instead of XS:

    FFI / Platypus does not require messing with the guts of Perl

      XS is less of an API and more of the guts of perl splayed out to do
      whatever you want. That may at times be very powerful, but it can
      also be a frustrating exercise in hair pulling.

    FFI / Platypus is portable

      Lots of languages have FFI interfaces, and it is subjectively easier
      to port an extension written in FFI in Perl or another language to
      FFI in another language or Perl. One goal of the Platypus Project is
      to reduce common interface specifications to a common format like
      JSON that could be shared between different languages.

    FFI / Platypus could be a bridge to Raku

      One of those "other" languages could be Raku and Raku already has an
      FFI interface I am told.

    FFI / Platypus can be reimplemented

      In a bright future with multiple implementations of Perl 5, each
      interpreter will have its own implementation of Platypus, allowing
      extensions to be written once and used on multiple platforms, in much
      the same way that Ruby-FFI extensions can be use in Ruby, JRuby and
      Rubinius.

    FFI / Platypus is pure perl (sorta)

      One Platypus script or module works on any platform where the
      libraries it uses are available. That means you can deploy your
      Platypus script in a shared filesystem where they may be run on
      different platforms. It also means that Platypus modules do not need
      to be installed in the platform specific Perl library path.

    FFI / Platypus is not C or C++ centric

      XS is implemented primarily as a bunch of C macros, which requires at
      least some understanding of C, the C pre-processor, and some C++
      caveats (since on some platforms Perl is compiled and linked with a
      C++ compiler). Platypus on the other hand could be used to call other
      compiled languages, like Fortran, Go, Rust, Pascal, C++, or even
      assembly, allowing you to focus on your strengths.

    FFI / Platypus does not require a parser

      Inline isolates the extension developer from XS to some extent, but
      it also requires a parser. The various Inline language bindings are a
      great technical achievement, but I think writing a parser for every
      language that you want to interface with is a bit of an anti-pattern.

    This document consists of an API reference, a set of examples, some
    support and development (for contributors) information. If you are new
    to Platypus or FFI, you may want to skip down to the EXAMPLES to get a
    taste of what you can do with Platypus.

    Platypus has extensive documentation of types at FFI::Platypus::Type
    and its custom types API at FFI::Platypus::API.

    You are strongly encouraged to use API level 1 for all new code. There
    are a number of improvements and design fixes that you get for free.
    You should even consider updating existing modules to use API level 1
    where feasible. How do I do that you might ask? Simply pass in the API
    level to the platypus constructor.

     my $ffi = FFI::Platypus->new( api => 1 );

    The Platypus documentation has already been updated to assume API level
    1.

CONSTRUCTORS

 new

     my $ffi = FFI::Platypus->new( api => 1, %options);

    Create a new instance of FFI::Platypus.

    Any types defined with this instance will be valid for this instance
    only, so you do not need to worry about stepping on the toes of other
    CPAN FFI / Platypus Authors.

    Any functions found will be out of the list of libraries specified with
    the lib attribute.

  options

    api

      [version 0.91]

      Sets the API level. Legal values are

      0

	Original API level. See FFI::Platypus::TypeParser::Version0 for
	details on the differences.

      1

	Enable the next generation type parser which allows pass-by-value
	records and type decoration on basic types. Using API level 1 prior
	to Platypus version 1.00 will trigger a (noisy) warning.

	All new code should be written with this set to 1! The Platypus
	documentation assumes this api level is set.

      2

	Enable version 2 API, which is currently experimental. Using API
	level 2 prior to Platypus version 2.00 will trigger a (noisy)
	warning.

	API version 2 is identical to version 1, except:

	Pointer functions that return NULL will return undef instead of
	empty list

	  This fixes a long standing design bug in Platypus.

	Array references may be passed to pointer argument types

	  This replicates the behavior of array argument types with no
	  size. So the types sint8* and sint8[] behave identically when an
	  array reference is passed in. They differ in that, as before, you
	  can pass a scalar reference into type sint8*.

    lib

      Either a pathname (string) or a list of pathnames (array ref of
      strings) to pre-populate the lib attribute. Use [undef] to search the
      current process for symbols.

      0.48

      undef (without the array reference) can be used to search the current
      process for symbols.

    ignore_not_found

      [version 0.15]

      Set the ignore_not_found attribute.

    lang

      [version 0.18]

      Set the lang attribute.

ATTRIBUTES

 lib

     $ffi->lib($path1, $path2, ...);
     my @paths = $ffi->lib;

    The list of libraries to search for symbols in.

    The most portable and reliable way to find dynamic libraries is by
    using FFI::CheckLib, like this:

     use FFI::CheckLib 0.06;
     $ffi->lib(find_lib_or_die lib => 'archive');
       # finds libarchive.so on Linux
       #       libarchive.bundle on OS X
       #       libarchive.dll (or archive.dll) on Windows
       #       cygarchive-13.dll on Cygwin
       #       ...
       # and will die if it isn't found

    FFI::CheckLib has a number of options, such as checking for specific
    symbols, etc. You should consult the documentation for that module.

    As a special case, if you add undef as a "library" to be searched,
    Platypus will also search the current process for symbols. This is
    mostly useful for finding functions in the standard C library, without
    having to know the name of the standard c library for your platform (as
    it turns out it is different just about everywhere!).

    You may also use the "find_lib" method as a shortcut:

     $ffi->find_lib( lib => 'archive' );

 ignore_not_found

    [version 0.15]

     $ffi->ignore_not_found(1);
     my $ignore_not_found = $ffi->ignore_not_found;

    Normally the attach and function methods will throw an exception if it
    cannot find the name of the function you provide it. This will change
    the behavior such that function will return undef when the function is
    not found and attach will ignore functions that are not found. This is
    useful when you are writing bindings to a library and have many
    optional functions and you do not wish to wrap every call to function
    or attach in an eval.

 lang

    [version 0.18]

     $ffi->lang($language);

    Specifies the foreign language that you will be interfacing with. The
    default is C. The foreign language specified with this attribute
    changes the default native types (for example, if you specify Rust, you
    will get i32 as an alias for sint32 instead of int as you do with C).

    If the foreign language plugin supports it, this will also enable
    Platypus to find symbols using the demangled names (for example, if you
    specify CPP for C++ you can use method names like Foo::get_bar() with
    "attach" or "function".

 api

    [version 1.11]

     my $level = $ffi->api;

    Returns the API level of the Platypus instance.

METHODS

 type

     $ffi->type($typename);
     $ffi->type($typename => $alias);

    Define a type. The first argument is the native or C name of the type.
    The second argument (optional) is an alias name that you can use to
    refer to this new type. See FFI::Platypus::Type for legal type
    definitions.

    Examples:

     $ffi->type('sint32');            # only checks to see that sint32 is a valid type
     $ffi->type('sint32' => 'myint'); # creates an alias myint for sint32
     $ffi->type('bogus');             # dies with appropriate diagnostic

 custom_type

     $ffi->custom_type($alias => {
       native_type         => $native_type,
       native_to_perl      => $coderef,
       perl_to_native      => $coderef,
       perl_to_native_post => $coderef,
     });

    Define a custom type. See FFI::Platypus::Type#Custom-Types for details.

 load_custom_type

     $ffi->load_custom_type($name => $alias, @type_args);

    Load the custom type defined in the module $name, and make an alias
    $alias. If the custom type requires any arguments, they may be passed
    in as @type_args. See FFI::Platypus::Type#Custom-Types for details.

    If $name contains :: then it will be assumed to be a fully qualified
    package name. If not, then FFI::Platypus::Type:: will be prepended to
    it.

 types

     my @types = $ffi->types;
     my @types = FFI::Platypus->types;

    Returns the list of types that FFI knows about. This will include the
    native libffi types (example: sint32, opaque and double) and the normal
    C types (example: unsigned int, uint32_t), any types that you have
    defined using the type method, and custom types.

    The list of types that Platypus knows about varies somewhat from
    platform to platform, FFI::Platypus::Type includes a list of the core
    types that you can always count on having access to.

    It can also be called as a class method, in which case, no user defined
    or custom types will be included in the list.

 type_meta

     my $meta = $ffi->type_meta($type_name);
     my $meta = FFI::Platypus->type_meta($type_name);

    Returns a hash reference with the meta information for the given type.

    It can also be called as a class method, in which case, you won't be
    able to get meta data on user defined types.

    The format of the meta data is implementation dependent and subject to
    change. It may be useful for display or debugging.

    Examples:

     my $meta = $ffi->type_meta('int');        # standard int type
     my $meta = $ffi->type_meta('int[64]');    # array of 64 ints
     $ffi->type('int[128]' => 'myintarray');
     my $meta = $ffi->type_meta('myintarray'); # array of 128 ints

 mangler

     $ffi->mangler(\&mangler);

    Specify a customer mangler to be used for symbol lookup. This is
    usually useful when you are writing bindings for a library where all of
    the functions have the same prefix. Example:

     $ffi->mangler(sub {
       my($symbol) = @_;
       return "foo_$symbol";
     });
     
     $ffi->function( get_bar => [] => 'int' );  # attaches foo_get_bar
     
     my $f = $ffi->function( set_baz => ['int'] => 'void' );
     $f->call(22); # calls foo_set_baz

 function

     my $function = $ffi->function($name => \@argument_types => $return_type);
     my $function = $ffi->function($address => \@argument_types => $return_type);
     my $function = $ffi->function($name => \@argument_types => $return_type, \&wrapper);
     my $function = $ffi->function($address => \@argument_types => $return_type, \&wrapper);

    Returns an object that is similar to a code reference in that it can be
    called like one.

    Caveat: many situations require a real code reference, so at the price
    of a performance penalty you can get one like this:

     my $function = $ffi->function(...);
     my $coderef = sub { $function->(@_) };

    It may be better, and faster to create a real Perl function using the
    attach method.

    In addition to looking up a function by name you can provide the
    address of the symbol yourself:

     my $address = $ffi->find_symbol('my_function');
     my $function = $ffi->function($address => ...);

    Under the covers, function uses find_symbol when you provide it with a
    name, but it is useful to keep this in mind as there are alternative
    ways of obtaining a functions address. Example: a C function could
    return the address of another C function that you might want to call,
    or modules such as FFI::TinyCC produce machine code at runtime that you
    can call from Platypus.

    [version 0.76]

    If the last argument is a code reference, then it will be used as a
    wrapper around the function when called. The first argument to the
    wrapper will be the inner function, or if it is later attached an xsub.
    This can be used if you need to verify/modify input/output data.

    Examples:

     my $function = $ffi->function('my_function_name', ['int', 'string'] => 'string');
     my $return_string = $function->(1, "hi there");

    [version 0.91]

     my $function = $ffi->function( $name => \@fixed_argument_types => \@var_argument_types => $return_type);
     my $function = $ffi->function( $name => \@fixed_argument_types => \@var_argument_types => $return_type, \&wrapper);
     my $function = $ffi->function( $name => \@fixed_argument_types => \@var_argument_types);
     my $function = $ffi->function( $name => \@fixed_argument_types => \@var_argument_types => \&wrapper);

    Version 0.91 and later allows you to creat functions for c variadic
    functions (such as printf, scanf, etc) which can take a variable number
    of arguments. The first set of arguments are the fixed set, the second
    set are the variable arguments to bind with. The variable argument
    types must be specified in order to create a function object, so if you
    need to call variadic function with different set of arguments then you
    will need to create a new function object each time:

     # int printf(const char *fmt, ...);
     $ffi->function( printf => ['string'] => ['int'] => 'int' )
         ->call("print integer %d\n", 42);
     $ffi->function( printf => ['string'] => ['string'] => 'int' )
         ->call("print string %s\n", 'platypus');

    Some older versions of libffi and possibly some platforms may not
    support variadic functions. If you try to create a one, then an
    exception will be thrown.

    [version 1.26]

    If the return type is omitted then void will be the assumed return
    type.

 attach

     $ffi->attach($name => \@argument_types => $return_type);
     $ffi->attach([$c_name => $perl_name] => \@argument_types => $return_type);
     $ffi->attach([$address => $perl_name] => \@argument_types => $return_type);
     $ffi->attach($name => \@argument_types => $return_type, \&wrapper);
     $ffi->attach([$c_name => $perl_name] => \@argument_types => $return_type, \&wrapper);
     $ffi->attach([$address => $perl_name] => \@argument_types => $return_type, \&wrapper);

    Find and attach a C function as a real live Perl xsub. The advantage of
    attaching a function over using the function method is that it is much
    much much faster since no object resolution needs to be done. The
    disadvantage is that it locks the function and the FFI::Platypus
    instance into memory permanently, since there is no way to deallocate
    an xsub.

    If just one $name is given, then the function will be attached in Perl
    with the same name as it has in C. The second form allows you to give
    the Perl function a different name. You can also provide an address
    (the third form), just like with the function method.

    Examples:

     $ffi->attach('my_function_name', ['int', 'string'] => 'string');
     $ffi->attach(['my_c_function_name' => 'my_perl_function_name'], ['int', 'string'] => 'string');
     my $string1 = my_function_name($int);
     my $string2 = my_perl_function_name($int);

    [version 0.20]

    If the last argument is a code reference, then it will be used as a
    wrapper around the attached xsub. The first argument to the wrapper
    will be the inner xsub. This can be used if you need to verify/modify
    input/output data.

    Examples:

     $ffi->attach('my_function', ['int', 'string'] => 'string', sub {
       my($my_function_xsub, $integer, $string) = @_;
       $integer++;
       $string .= " and another thing";
       my $return_string = $my_function_xsub->($integer, $string);
       $return_string =~ s/Belgium//; # HHGG remove profanity
       $return_string;
     });

    [version 0.91]

     $ffi->attach($name => \@fixed_argument_types => \@var_argument_types, $return_type);
     $ffi->attach($name => \@fixed_argument_types => \@var_argument_types, $return_type, \&wrapper);

    As of version 0.91 you can attach a variadic functions, if it is
    supported by the platform / libffi that you are using. For details see
    the function documentation. If not supported by the implementation then
    an exception will be thrown.

 closure

     my $closure = $ffi->closure($coderef);
     my $closure = FFI::Platypus->closure($coderef);

    Prepares a code reference so that it can be used as a FFI closure (a
    Perl subroutine that can be called from C code). For details on
    closures, see FFI::Platypus::Type#Closures and FFI::Platypus::Closure.

 cast

     my $converted_value = $ffi->cast($original_type, $converted_type, $original_value);

    The cast function converts an existing $original_value of type
    $original_type into one of type $converted_type. Not all types are
    supported, so care must be taken. For example, to get the address of a
    string, you can do this:

     my $address = $ffi->cast('string' => 'opaque', $string_value);

    Something that won't work is trying to cast an array to anything:

     my $address = $ffi->cast('int[10]' => 'opaque', \@list);  # WRONG

 attach_cast

     $ffi->attach_cast("cast_name", $original_type, $converted_type);
     $ffi->attach_cast("cast_name", $original_type, $converted_type, \&wrapper);
     my $converted_value = cast_name($original_value);

    This function attaches a cast as a permanent xsub. This will make it
    faster and may be useful if you are calling a particular cast a lot.

    [version 1.26]

    A wrapper may be added as the last argument to attach_cast and works
    just like the wrapper for attach and function methods.

 sizeof

     my $size = $ffi->sizeof($type);
     my $size = FFI::Platypus->sizeof($type);

    Returns the total size of the given type in bytes. For example to get
    the size of an integer:

     my $intsize = $ffi->sizeof('int');   # usually 4
     my $longsize = $ffi->sizeof('long'); # usually 4 or 8 depending on platform

    You can also get the size of arrays

     my $intarraysize = $ffi->sizeof('int[64]');  # usually 4*64
     my $intarraysize = $ffi->sizeof('long[64]'); # usually 4*64 or 8*64
                                                  # depending on platform

    Keep in mind that "pointer" types will always be the pointer / word
    size for the platform that you are using. This includes strings, opaque
    and pointers to other types.

    This function is not very fast, so you might want to save this value as
    a constant, particularly if you need the size in a loop with many
    iterations.

 alignof

    [version 0.21]

     my $align = $ffi->alignof($type);

    Returns the alignment of the given type in bytes.

 kindof

    [version 1.24]

     my $kind = $ffi->kindof($type);

    Returns the kind of a type. This is a string with a value of one of

    void

    scalar

    string

    closure

    record

    record-value

    pointer

    array

    object

 countof

    [version 1.24]

     my $count = $ffi->countof($type);

    For array types returns the number of elements in the array (returns 0
    for variable length array). For the void type returns 0. Returns 1 for
    all other types.

 def

    [version 1.24]

     $ffi->def($package, $type, $value);
     my $value = $ff->def($package, $type);

    This method allows you to store data for types. If the $package is not
    provided, then the caller's package will be used. $type must be a legal
    Platypus type for the FFI::Platypus instance.

 unitof

    [version 1.24]

     my $unittype = $ffi->unitof($type);

    For array and pointer types, returns the basic type without the array
    or pointer part. In other words, for sin16[] or sint16* it will return
    sint16.

 find_lib

    [version 0.20]

     $ffi->find_lib( lib => $libname );

    This is just a shortcut for calling FFI::CheckLib#find_lib and updating
    the "lib" attribute appropriately. Care should be taken though, as this
    method simply passes its arguments to FFI::CheckLib#find_lib, so if
    your module or script is depending on a specific feature in
    FFI::CheckLib then make sure that you update your prerequisites
    appropriately.

 find_symbol

     my $address = $ffi->find_symbol($name);

    Return the address of the given symbol (usually function).

 bundle

    [version 0.96 api = 1+]

     $ffi->bundle($package, \@args);
     $ffi->bundle(\@args);
     $ffi->bundle($package);
     $ffi->bundle;

    This is an interface for bundling compiled code with your distribution
    intended to eventually replace the package method documented above. See
    FFI::Platypus::Bundle for details on how this works.

 package

    [version 0.15 api = 0]

     $ffi->package($package, $file); # usually __PACKAGE__ and __FILE__ can be used
     $ffi->package;                  # autodetect

    Note: This method is officially discouraged in favor of bundle
    described above.

    If you use FFI::Build (or the older deprecated Module::Build::FFI to
    bundle C code with your distribution, you can use this method to tell
    the FFI::Platypus instance to look for symbols that came with the
    dynamic library that was built when your distribution was installed.

 abis

     my $href = $ffi->abis;
     my $href = FFI::Platypus->abis;

    Get the legal ABIs supported by your platform and underlying
    implementation. What is supported can vary a lot by CPU and by
    platform, or even between 32 and 64 bit on the same CPU and platform.
    They keys are the "ABI" names, also known as "calling conventions". The
    values are integers used internally by the implementation to represent
    those ABIs.

 abi

     $ffi->abi($name);

    Set the ABI or calling convention for use in subsequent calls to
    "function" or "attach". May be either a string name or integer value
    from the "abis" method above.

EXAMPLES

    Here are some examples. These examples are provided in full with the
    Platypus distribution in the "examples" directory. There are also some
    more examples in FFI::Platypus::Type that are related to types.

 Integer conversions

     use FFI::Platypus 1.00;
     
     my $ffi = FFI::Platypus->new( api => 1 );
     $ffi->lib(undef);
     
     $ffi->attach(puts => ['string'] => 'int');
     $ffi->attach(atoi => ['string'] => 'int');
     
     puts(atoi('56'));

    Discussion: puts and atoi should be part of the standard C library on
    all platforms. puts prints a string to standard output, and atoi
    converts a string to integer. Specifying undef as a library tells
    Platypus to search the current process for symbols, which includes the
    standard c library.

 libnotify

     use FFI::CheckLib;
     use FFI::Platypus 1.00;
     
     # NOTE: I ported this from anoter Perl FFI library and it seems to work most
     # of the time, but also seems to SIGSEGV sometimes.  I saw the same behavior
     # in the old version, and am not really familiar with the libnotify API to
     # say what is the cause.  Patches welcome to fix it.
     
     my $ffi = FFI::Platypus->new( api => 1 );
     $ffi->lib(find_lib_or_exit lib => 'notify');
     
     $ffi->attach(notify_init   => ['string'] => 'void');
     $ffi->attach(notify_uninit => []       => 'void');
     $ffi->attach([notify_notification_new    => 'notify_new']    => ['string', 'string', 'string']           => 'opaque');
     $ffi->attach([notify_notification_update => 'notify_update'] => ['opaque', 'string', 'string', 'string'] => 'void');
     $ffi->attach([notify_notification_show   => 'notify_show']   => ['opaque', 'opaque']                     => 'void');
     
     notify_init('FFI::Platypus');
     my $n = notify_new('','','');
     notify_update($n, 'FFI::Platypus', 'It works!!!', 'media-playback-start');
     notify_show($n, undef);
     notify_uninit();

    Discussion: libnotify is a desktop GUI notification library for the
    GNOME Desktop environment. This script sends a notification event that
    should show up as a balloon, for me it did so in the upper right hand
    corner of my screen.

    The most portable way to find the correct name and location of a
    dynamic library is via the FFI::CheckLib#find_lib family of functions.
    If you are putting together a CPAN distribution, you should also
    consider using FFI::CheckLib#check_lib_or_exit function in your
    Build.PL or Makefile.PL file (If you are using Dist::Zilla, check out
    the Dist::Zilla::Plugin::FFI::CheckLib plugin). This will provide a
    user friendly diagnostic letting the user know that the required
    library is missing, and reduce the number of bogus CPAN testers results
    that you will get.

    Also in this example, we rename some of the functions when they are
    placed into Perl space to save typing:

     $ffi->attach( [notify_notification_new => 'notify_new']
       => ['string','string','string']
       => 'opaque'
     );

    When you specify a list reference as the "name" of the function the
    first element is the symbol name as understood by the dynamic library.
    The second element is the name as it will be placed in Perl space.

    Later, when we call notify_new:

     my $n = notify_new('','','');

    We are really calling the C function notify_notification_new.

 Allocating and freeing memory

     use FFI::Platypus 1.00;
     use FFI::Platypus::Memory qw( malloc free memcpy );
     
     my $ffi = FFI::Platypus->new( api => 1 );
     my $buffer = malloc 12;
     
     memcpy $buffer, $ffi->cast('string' => 'opaque', "hello there"), length "hello there\0";
     
     print $ffi->cast('opaque' => 'string', $buffer), "\n";
     
     free $buffer;

    Discussion: malloc and free are standard memory allocation functions
    available from the standard c library and. Interfaces to these and
    other memory related functions are provided by the
    FFI::Platypus::Memory module.

 structured data records

     use FFI::Platypus 1.00;
     use FFI::C;
     
     my $ffi = FFI::Platypus->new(
       api => 1,
       lib => [undef],
     );
     FFI::C->ffi($ffi);
     
     package Unix::TimeStruct {
     
       FFI::C->struct(tm => [
         tm_sec    => 'int',
         tm_min    => 'int',
         tm_hour   => 'int',
         tm_mday   => 'int',
         tm_mon    => 'int',
         tm_year   => 'int',
         tm_wday   => 'int',
         tm_yday   => 'int',
         tm_isdst  => 'int',
         tm_gmtoff => 'long',
         _tm_zone  => 'opaque',
       ]);
     
       # For now 'string' is unsupported by FFI::C, but we
       # can cast the time zone from an opaque pointer to
       # string.
       sub tm_zone {
         my $self = shift;
         $ffi->cast('opaque', 'string', $self->_tm_zone);
       }
     
       # attach the C localtime function
       $ffi->attach( localtime => ['time_t*'] => 'tm', sub {
         my($inner, $class, $time) = @_;
         $time = time unless defined $time;
         $inner->(\$time);
       });
     }
     
     # now we can actually use our Unix::TimeStruct class
     my $time = Unix::TimeStruct->localtime;
     printf "time is %d:%d:%d %s\n",
       $time->tm_hour,
       $time->tm_min,
       $time->tm_sec,
       $time->tm_zone;

    Discussion: C and other machine code languages frequently provide
    interfaces that include structured data records (known as "structs" in
    C). They sometimes provide an API in which you are expected to
    manipulate these records before and/or after passing them along to C
    functions. For C pointers to structs, unions and arrays of structs and
    unions, the easiest interface to use is via FFI::C. If you are working
    with structs that must be passed as values (not pointers), then you
    want to use the FFI::Platypus::Record class instead. We will discuss
    this class later.

    The C localtime function takes a pointer to a C struct. We simply
    define the members of the struct using the FFI::C struct method.
    Because we used the ffi method to tell FFI::C to use our local instance
    of FFI::Platypus it registers the tm type for us, and we can just start
    using it as a return type!

 structured data records by-value

 libuuid

     use FFI::CheckLib;
     use FFI::Platypus 1.00;
     use FFI::Platypus::Memory qw( malloc free );
     
     my $ffi = FFI::Platypus->new( api => 1 );
     $ffi->lib(find_lib_or_exit lib => 'uuid');
     $ffi->type('string(37)*' => 'uuid_string');
     $ffi->type('record(16)*' => 'uuid_t');
     
     $ffi->attach(uuid_generate => ['uuid_t'] => 'void');
     $ffi->attach(uuid_unparse  => ['uuid_t','uuid_string'] => 'void');
     
     my $uuid = "\0" x $ffi->sizeof('uuid_t');
     uuid_generate($uuid);
     
     my $string = "\0" x $ffi->sizeof('uuid_string');
     uuid_unparse($uuid, $string);
     
     print "$string\n";

    Discussion: libuuid is a library used to generate unique identifiers
    (UUID) for objects that may be accessible beyond the local system. The
    library is or was part of the Linux e2fsprogs package.

    Knowing the size of objects is sometimes important. In this example, we
    use the sizeof function to get the size of 16 characters (in this case
    it is simply 16 bytes). We also know that the strings "deparsed" by
    uuid_unparse are exactly 37 bytes.

 puts and getpid

     use FFI::Platypus 1.00;
     
     my $ffi = FFI::Platypus->new( api => 1 );
     $ffi->lib(undef);
     
     $ffi->attach(puts => ['string'] => 'int');
     $ffi->attach(getpid => [] => 'int');
     
     puts(getpid());

    Discussion: puts is part of standard C library on all platforms. getpid
    is available on Unix type platforms.

 Math library

     use FFI::Platypus 1.00;
     use FFI::CheckLib;
     
     my $ffi = FFI::Platypus->new( api => 1 );
     $ffi->lib(undef);
     $ffi->attach(puts => ['string'] => 'int');
     $ffi->attach(fdim => ['double','double'] => 'double');
     
     puts(fdim(7.0, 2.0));
     
     $ffi->attach(cos => ['double'] => 'double');
     
     puts(cos(2.0));
     
     $ffi->attach(fmax => ['double', 'double'] => 'double');
     
     puts(fmax(2.0,3.0));

    Discussion: On UNIX the standard c library math functions are
    frequently provided in a separate library libm, so you could search for
    those symbols in "libm.so", but that won't work on non-UNIX platforms
    like Microsoft Windows. Fortunately Perl uses the math library so these
    symbols are already in the current process so you can use undef as the
    library to find them.

 Strings

     use FFI::Platypus 1.00;
     
     my $ffi = FFI::Platypus->new( api => 1 );
     $ffi->lib(undef);
     $ffi->attach(puts => ['string'] => 'int');
     $ffi->attach(strlen => ['string'] => 'int');
     
     puts(strlen('somestring'));
     
     $ffi->attach(strstr => ['string','string'] => 'string');
     
     puts(strstr('somestring', 'string'));
     
     #attach puts => [string] => int;
     
     puts(puts("lol"));
     
     $ffi->attach(strerror => ['int'] => 'string');
     
     puts(strerror(2));

    Discussion: ASCII and UTF-8 Strings are not a native type to libffi but
    the are handled seamlessly by Platypus. If you need to talk to an API
    that uses so called "wide" strings (APIs which use const wchar_t* or
    wchar_t*), then you will want to use the wide string type plugin
    FFI::Platypus::Type::WideString. APIs which use other arbitrary
    encodings can be accessed by converting your Perl strings manually with
    the Encode module.

 Attach function from pointer

     use FFI::TinyCC;
     use FFI::Platypus 1.00;
     
     my $ffi = FFI::Platypus->new( api => 1 );
     my $tcc = FFI::TinyCC->new;
     
     $tcc->compile_string(q{
       int
       add(int a, int b)
       {
         return a+b;
       }
     });
     
     my $address = $tcc->get_symbol('add');
     
     $ffi->attach( [ $address => 'add' ] => ['int','int'] => 'int' );
     
     print add(1,2), "\n";

    Discussion: Sometimes you will have a pointer to a function from a
    source other than Platypus that you want to call. You can use that
    address instead of a function name for either of the function or attach
    methods. In this example we use FFI::TinyCC to compile a short piece of
    C code and to give us the address of one of its functions, which we
    then use to create a perl xsub to call it.

    FFI::TinyCC embeds the Tiny C Compiler (tcc) to provide a just-in-time
    (JIT) compilation service for FFI.

 libzmq

     use constant ZMQ_IO_THREADS  => 1;
     use constant ZMQ_MAX_SOCKETS => 2;
     use constant ZMQ_REQ => 3;
     use constant ZMQ_REP => 4;
     use FFI::CheckLib qw( find_lib_or_exit );
     use FFI::Platypus 1.00;
     use FFI::Platypus::Memory qw( malloc );
     use FFI::Platypus::Buffer qw( scalar_to_buffer buffer_to_scalar );
     
     my $endpoint = "ipc://zmq-ffi-$$";
     my $ffi = FFI::Platypus->new( api => 1 );
     
     $ffi->lib(undef); # for puts
     $ffi->attach(puts => ['string'] => 'int');
     
     $ffi->lib(find_lib_or_exit lib => 'zmq');
     $ffi->attach(zmq_version => ['int*', 'int*', 'int*'] => 'void');
     
     my($major,$minor,$patch);
     zmq_version(\$major, \$minor, \$patch);
     puts("libzmq version $major.$minor.$patch");
     die "this script only works with libzmq 3 or better" unless $major >= 3;
     
     $ffi->type('opaque'       => 'zmq_context');
     $ffi->type('opaque'       => 'zmq_socket');
     $ffi->type('opaque'       => 'zmq_msg_t');
     $ffi->attach(zmq_ctx_new  => [] => 'zmq_context');
     $ffi->attach(zmq_ctx_set  => ['zmq_context', 'int', 'int'] => 'int');
     $ffi->attach(zmq_socket   => ['zmq_context', 'int'] => 'zmq_socket');
     $ffi->attach(zmq_connect  => ['opaque', 'string'] => 'int');
     $ffi->attach(zmq_bind     => ['zmq_socket', 'string'] => 'int');
     $ffi->attach(zmq_send     => ['zmq_socket', 'opaque', 'size_t', 'int'] => 'int');
     $ffi->attach(zmq_msg_init => ['zmq_msg_t'] => 'int');
     $ffi->attach(zmq_msg_recv => ['zmq_msg_t', 'zmq_socket', 'int'] => 'int');
     $ffi->attach(zmq_msg_data => ['zmq_msg_t'] => 'opaque');
     $ffi->attach(zmq_errno    => [] => 'int');
     $ffi->attach(zmq_strerror => ['int'] => 'string');
     
     my $context = zmq_ctx_new();
     zmq_ctx_set($context, ZMQ_IO_THREADS, 1);
     
     my $socket1 = zmq_socket($context, ZMQ_REQ);
     zmq_connect($socket1, $endpoint);
     
     my $socket2 = zmq_socket($context, ZMQ_REP);
     zmq_bind($socket2, $endpoint);
     
     do { # send
       our $sent_message = "hello there";
       my($pointer, $size) = scalar_to_buffer $sent_message;
       my $r = zmq_send($socket1, $pointer, $size, 0);
       die zmq_strerror(zmq_errno()) if $r == -1;
     };
     
     do { # recv
       my $msg_ptr  = malloc 100;
       zmq_msg_init($msg_ptr);
       my $size     = zmq_msg_recv($msg_ptr, $socket2, 0);
       die zmq_strerror(zmq_errno()) if $size == -1;
       my $data_ptr = zmq_msg_data($msg_ptr);
       my $recv_message = buffer_to_scalar $data_ptr, $size;
       print "recv_message = $recv_message\n";
     };

    Discussion: ØMQ is a high-performance asynchronous messaging library.
    There are a few things to note here.

    Firstly, sometimes there may be multiple versions of a library in the
    wild and you may need to verify that the library on a system meets your
    needs (alternatively you could support multiple versions and configure
    your bindings dynamically). Here we use zmq_version to ask libzmq which
    version it is.

    zmq_version returns the version number via three integer pointer
    arguments, so we use the pointer to integer type: int *. In order to
    pass pointer types, we pass a reference. In this case it is a reference
    to an undefined value, because zmq_version will write into the pointers
    the output values, but you can also pass in references to integers,
    floating point values and opaque pointer types. When the function
    returns the $major variable (and the others) has been updated and we
    can use it to verify that it supports the API that we require.

    Notice that we define three aliases for the opaque type: zmq_context,
    zmq_socket and zmq_msg_t. While this isn't strictly necessary, since
    Platypus and C treat all three of these types the same, it is useful
    form of documentation that helps describe the functionality of the
    interface.

    Finally we attach the necessary functions, send and receive a message.
    If you are interested, there is a fully fleshed out ØMQ Perl interface
    implemented using FFI called ZMQ::FFI.

 libarchive

     use FFI::Platypus 1.00;
     use FFI::CheckLib qw( find_lib_or_exit );
     
     # This example uses FreeBSD's libarchive to list the contents of any
     # archive format that it suppors.  We've also filled out a part of
     # the ArchiveWrite class that could be used for writing archive formats
     # supported by libarchive
     
     my $ffi = FFI::Platypus->new( api => 1 );
     $ffi->lib(find_lib_or_exit lib => 'archive');
     $ffi->type('object(Archive)'      => 'archive_t');
     $ffi->type('object(ArchiveRead)'  => 'archive_read_t');
     $ffi->type('object(ArchiveWrite)' => 'archive_write_t');
     $ffi->type('object(ArchiveEntry)' => 'archive_entry_t');
     
     package Archive;
     
     # base class is "abstract" having no constructor or destructor
     
     $ffi->mangler(sub {
       my($name) = @_;
       "archive_$name";
     });
     $ffi->attach( error_string => ['archive_t'] => 'string' );
     
     package ArchiveRead;
     
     our @ISA = qw( Archive );
     
     $ffi->mangler(sub {
       my($name) = @_;
       "archive_read_$name";
     });
     
     $ffi->attach( new                   => ['string']                        => 'archive_read_t' );
     $ffi->attach( [ free => 'DESTROY' ] => ['archive_t']                     => 'void' );
     $ffi->attach( support_filter_all    => ['archive_t']                     => 'int' );
     $ffi->attach( support_format_all    => ['archive_t']                     => 'int' );
     $ffi->attach( open_filename         => ['archive_t','string','size_t']   => 'int' );
     $ffi->attach( next_header2          => ['archive_t', 'archive_entry_t' ] => 'int' );
     $ffi->attach( data_skip             => ['archive_t']                     => 'int' );
     # ... define additional read methods
     
     package ArchiveWrite;
     
     our @ISA = qw( Archive );
     
     $ffi->mangler(sub {
       my($name) = @_;
       "archive_write_$name";
     });
     
     $ffi->attach( new                   => ['string'] => 'archive_write_t' );
     $ffi->attach( [ free => 'DESTROY' ] => ['archive_write_t'] => 'void' );
     # ... define additional write methods
     
     package ArchiveEntry;
     
     $ffi->mangler(sub {
       my($name) = @_;
       "archive_entry_$name";
     });
     
     $ffi->attach( new => ['string']     => 'archive_entry_t' );
     $ffi->attach( [ free => 'DESTROY' ] => ['archive_entry_t'] => 'void' );
     $ffi->attach( pathname              => ['archive_entry_t'] => 'string' );
     # ... define additional entry methods
     
     package main;
     
     use constant ARCHIVE_OK => 0;
     
     # this is a Perl version of the C code here:
     # https://github.com/libarchive/libarchive/wiki/Examples#List_contents_of_Archive_stored_in_File
     
     my $archive_filename = shift @ARGV;
     unless(defined $archive_filename)
     {
       print "usage: $0 archive.tar\n";
       exit;
     }
     
     my $archive = ArchiveRead->new;
     $archive->support_filter_all;
     $archive->support_format_all;
     
     my $r = $archive->open_filename($archive_filename, 1024);
     die "error opening $archive_filename: ", $archive->error_string
       unless $r == ARCHIVE_OK;
     
     my $entry = ArchiveEntry->new;
     
     while($archive->next_header2($entry) == ARCHIVE_OK)
     {
       print $entry->pathname, "\n";
       $archive->data_skip;
     }

    Discussion: libarchive is the implementation of tar for FreeBSD
    provided as a library and available on a number of platforms.

    One interesting thing about libarchive is that it provides a kind of
    object oriented interface via opaque pointers. This example creates an
    abstract class Archive, and concrete classes ArchiveWrite, ArchiveRead
    and ArchiveEntry. The concrete classes can even be inherited from and
    extended just like any Perl classes because of the way the custom types
    are implemented. We use Platypus's object type for this implementation,
    which is a wrapper around an opaque (can also be an integer) type that
    is blessed into a particular class.

    Another advanced feature of this example is that we define a mangler to
    modify the symbol resolution for each class. This means we can do this
    when we define a method for Archive:

     $ffi->attach( support_filter_all => ['archive_t'] => 'int' );

    Rather than this:

     $ffi->attach(
       [ archive_read_support_filter_all => 'support_read_filter_all' ] =>
       ['archive_t'] => 'int' );
     );

 unix open

     use FFI::Platypus 1.00;
     
     {
       package FD;
     
       use constant O_RDONLY => 0;
       use constant O_WRONLY => 1;
       use constant O_RDWR   => 2;
     
       use constant IN  => bless \do { my $in=0  }, __PACKAGE__;
       use constant OUT => bless \do { my $out=1 }, __PACKAGE__;
       use constant ERR => bless \do { my $err=2 }, __PACKAGE__;
     
       my $ffi = FFI::Platypus->new( api => 1, lib => [undef]);
     
       $ffi->type('object(FD,int)' => 'fd');
     
       $ffi->attach( [ 'open' => 'new' ] => [ 'string', 'int', 'mode_t' ] => 'fd' => sub {
         my($xsub, $class, $fn, @rest) = @_;
         my $fd = $xsub->($fn, @rest);
         die "error opening $fn $!" if $$fd == -1;
         $fd;
       });
     
       $ffi->attach( write => ['fd', 'string', 'size_t' ] => 'ssize_t' );
       $ffi->attach( read  => ['fd', 'string', 'size_t' ] => 'ssize_t' );
       $ffi->attach( close => ['fd'] => 'int' );
     }
     
     my $fd = FD->new("$0", FD::O_RDONLY);
     
     my $buffer = "\0" x 10;
     
     while(my $br = $fd->read($buffer, 10))
     {
       FD::OUT->write($buffer, $br);
     }
     
     $fd->close;

    Discussion: The Unix file system calls use an integer handle for each
    open file. We can use the same object type that we used for libarchive
    above, except we let platypus know that the underlying type is int
    instead of opaque (the latter being the default for the object type).
    Mainly just for demonstration since Perl has much better IO libraries,
    but now we have an OO interface to the Unix IO functions.

 bzip2

     use FFI::Platypus 1.00;
     use FFI::CheckLib qw( find_lib_or_die );
     use FFI::Platypus::Buffer qw( scalar_to_buffer buffer_to_scalar );
     use FFI::Platypus::Memory qw( malloc free );
     
     my $ffi = FFI::Platypus->new( api => 1 );
     $ffi->lib(find_lib_or_die lib => 'bz2');
     
     $ffi->attach(
       [ BZ2_bzBuffToBuffCompress => 'compress' ] => [
         'opaque',                           # dest
         'unsigned int *',                   # dest length
         'opaque',                           # source
         'unsigned int',                     # source length
         'int',                              # blockSize100k
         'int',                              # verbosity
         'int',                              # workFactor
       ] => 'int',
       sub {
         my $sub = shift;
         my($source,$source_length) = scalar_to_buffer $_[0];
         my $dest_length = int(length($source)*1.01) + 1 + 600;
         my $dest = malloc $dest_length;
         my $r = $sub->($dest, \$dest_length, $source, $source_length, 9, 0, 30);
         die "bzip2 error $r" unless $r == 0;
         my $compressed = buffer_to_scalar($dest, $dest_length);
         free $dest;
         $compressed;
       },
     );
     
     $ffi->attach(
       [ BZ2_bzBuffToBuffDecompress => 'decompress' ] => [
         'opaque',                           # dest
         'unsigned int *',                   # dest length
         'opaque',                           # source
         'unsigned int',                     # source length
         'int',                              # small
         'int',                              # verbosity
       ] => 'int',
       sub {
         my $sub = shift;
         my($source, $source_length) = scalar_to_buffer $_[0];
         my $dest_length = $_[1];
         my $dest = malloc $dest_length;
         my $r = $sub->($dest, \$dest_length, $source, $source_length, 0, 0);
         die "bzip2 error $r" unless $r == 0;
         my $decompressed = buffer_to_scalar($dest, $dest_length);
         free $dest;
         $decompressed;
       },
     );
     
     my $original = "hello compression world\n";
     my $compressed = compress($original);
     print decompress($compressed, length $original);

    Discussion: bzip2 is a compression library. For simple one shot
    attempts at compression/decompression when you expect the original and
    the result to fit within memory it provides two convenience functions
    BZ2_bzBuffToBuffCompress and BZ2_bzBuffToBuffDecompress.

    The first four arguments of both of these C functions are identical,
    and represent two buffers. One buffer is the source, the second is the
    destination. For the destination, the length is passed in as a pointer
    to an integer. On input this integer is the size of the destination
    buffer, and thus the maximum size of the compressed or decompressed
    data. When the function returns the actual size of compressed or
    compressed data is stored in this integer.

    This is normal stuff for C, but in Perl our buffers are scalars and
    they already know how large they are. In this sort of situation,
    wrapping the C function in some Perl code can make your interface a
    little more Perl like. In order to do this, just provide a code
    reference as the last argument to the "attach" method. The first
    argument to this wrapper will be a code reference to the C function.
    The Perl arguments will come in after that. This allows you to modify /
    convert the arguments to conform to the C API. What ever value you
    return from the wrapper function will be returned back to the original
    caller.

 The Win32 API

     use utf8;
     use FFI::Platypus 1.00;
     
     my $ffi = FFI::Platypus->new(
       api  => 1,
       lib  => [undef],
     );
     
     # see FFI::Platypus::Lang::Win32
     $ffi->lang('Win32');
     
     # Send a Unicode string to the Windows API MessageBoxW function.
     use constant MB_OK                   => 0x00000000;
     use constant MB_DEFAULT_DESKTOP_ONLY => 0x00020000;
     $ffi->attach( [MessageBoxW => 'MessageBox'] => [ 'HWND', 'LPCWSTR', 'LPCWSTR', 'UINT'] => 'int' );
     MessageBox(undef, "I ❤️ Platypus", "Confession", MB_OK|MB_DEFAULT_DESKTOP_ONLY);

    Discussion: The API used by Microsoft Windows present some unique
    challenges. On 32 bit systems a different ABI is used than what is used
    by the standard C library. It also provides a rats nest of type
    aliases. Finally if you want to talk Unicode to any of the Windows API
    you will need to use UTF-16LE instead of utf-8 which is native to Perl.
    (The Win32 API refers to these as LPWSTR and LPCWSTR types). As much as
    possible the Win32 "language" plugin attempts to handle this
    transparently. For more details see FFI::Platypus::Lang::Win32.

 bundle your own code

    ffi/foo.c:

     #include <ffi_platypus_bundle.h>
     #include <string.h>
     
     typedef struct {
       char *name;
       int value;
     } foo_t;
     
     foo_t*
     foo__new(const char *class_name, const char *name, int value)
     {
       (void)class_name;
       foo_t *self = malloc( sizeof( foo_t ) );
       self->name = strdup(name);
       self->value = value;
       return self;
     }
     
     const char *
     foo__name(foo_t *self)
     {
       return self->name;
     }
     
     int
     foo__value(foo_t *self)
     {
       return self->value;
     }
     
     void
     foo__DESTROY(foo_t *self)
     {
       free(self->name);
       free(self);
     }

    lib/Foo.pm:

     package Foo;
     
     use strict;
     use warnings;
     use FFI::Platypus 1.00;
     
     {
       my $ffi = FFI::Platypus->new( api => 1 );
     
       $ffi->type('object(Foo)' => 'foo_t');
       $ffi->mangler(sub {
         my $name = shift;
         $name =~ s/^/foo__/;
         $name;
       });
     
       $ffi->bundle;
     
       $ffi->attach( new =>     [ 'string', 'string', 'int' ] => 'foo_t'  );
       $ffi->attach( name =>    [ 'foo_t' ]                   => 'string' );
       $ffi->attach( value =>   [ 'foo_t' ]                   => 'int'    );
       $ffi->attach( DESTROY => [ 'foo_t' ]                   => 'void'   );
     }
     
     1;

    You can bundle your own C (or other compiled language) code with your
    Perl extension. Sometimes this is helpful for smoothing over the
    interface of a C library which is not very FFI friendly. Sometimes you
    may want to write some code in C for a tight loop. Either way, you can
    do this with the Platypus bundle interface. See FFI::Platypus::Bundle
    for more details.

    Also related is the bundle constant interface, which allows you to
    define Perl constants in C space. See FFI::Platypus::Constant for
    details.

FAQ

 How do I get constants defined as macros in C header files

    This turns out to be a challenge for any language calling into C, which
    frequently uses #define macros to define constants like so:

     #define FOO_STATIC  1
     #define FOO_DYNAMIC 2
     #define FOO_OTHER   3

    As macros are expanded and their definitions are thrown away by the C
    pre-processor there isn't any way to get the name/value mappings from
    the compiled dynamic library.

    You can manually create equivalent constants in your Perl source:

     use constant FOO_STATIC  => 1;
     use constant FOO_DYNAMIC => 2;
     use constant FOO_OTHER   => 3;

    If there are a lot of these types of constants you might want to
    consider using a tool (Convert::Binary::C can do this) that can extract
    the constants for you.

    See also the "Integer constants" example in FFI::Platypus::Type.

    You can also use the new Platypus bundle interface to define Perl
    constants from C space. This is more reliable, but does require a
    compiler at install time. It is recommended mainly for writing bindings
    against libraries that have constants that can vary widely from
    platform to platform. See FFI::Platypus::Constant for details.

 What about enums?

    The C enum types are integers. The underlying type is up to the
    platform, so Platypus provides enum and senum types for unsigned and
    singed enums respectively. At least some compilers treat signed and
    unsigned enums as different types. The enum values are essentially the
    same as macro constants described above from an FFI perspective. Thus
    the process of defining enum values is identical to the process of
    defining macro constants in Perl.

    For more details on enumerated types see "Enum types" in
    FFI::Platypus::Type.

    There is also a type plugin (FFI::Platypus::Type::Enum) that can be
    helpful in writing interfaces that use enums.

 Memory leaks

    There are a couple places where memory is allocated, but never
    deallocated that may look like memory leaks by tools designed to find
    memory leaks like valgrind. This memory is intended to be used for the
    lifetime of the perl process so there normally this isn't a problem
    unless you are embedding a Perl interpreter which doesn't closely match
    the lifetime of your overall application.

    Specifically:

    type cache

      some types are cached and not freed. These are needed as long as
      there are FFI functions that could be called.

    attached functions

      Attaching a function as an xsub will definitely allocate memory that
      won't be freed because the xsub could be called at any time,
      including in END blocks.

    The Platypus team plans on adding a hook to free some of this "leaked"
    memory for use cases where Perl and Platypus are embedded in a larger
    application where the lifetime of the Perl process is significantly
    smaller than the overall lifetime of the whole process.

 I get seg faults on some platforms but not others with a library using
 pthreads.

    On some platforms, Perl isn't linked with libpthreads if Perl threads
    are not enabled. On some platforms this doesn't seem to matter,
    libpthreads can be loaded at runtime without much ill-effect. (Linux
    from my experience doesn't seem to mind one way or the other). Some
    platforms are not happy about this, and about the only thing that you
    can do about it is to build Perl such that it links with libpthreads
    even if it isn't a threaded Perl.

    This is not really an FFI issue, but a Perl issue, as you will have the
    same problem writing XS code for the such libraries.

 Doesn't work on Perl 5.10.0.

    I try as best as possible to support the same range of Perls as the
    Perl toolchain. That means all the way back to 5.8.1. Unfortunately,
    5.10.0 seems to have a problem that is difficult to diagnose. Patches
    to fix are welcome, if you want to help out on this, please see:

    https://github.com/PerlFFI/FFI-Platypus/issues/68

    Since this is an older buggy version of Perl it is recommended that you
    instead upgrade to 5.10.1 or later.

CAVEATS

    Platypus and Native Interfaces like libffi rely on the availability of
    dynamic libraries. Things not supported include:

    Systems that lack dynamic library support

      Like MS-DOS

    Systems that are not supported by libffi

      Like OpenVMS

    Languages that do not support using dynamic libraries from other
    languages

      Like older versions of Google's Go. This is a problem for C / XS code
      as well.

    Languages that do not compile to machine code

      Like .NET based languages and Java.

    The documentation has a bias toward using FFI / Platypus with C. This
    is my fault, as my background in mainly in C/C++ programmer (when I am
    not writing Perl). In many places I use "C" as a short form for "any
    language that can generate machine code and is callable from C". I
    welcome pull requests to the Platypus core to address this issue. In an
    attempt to ease usage of Platypus by non C programmers, I have written
    a number of foreign language plugins for various popular languages (see
    the SEE ALSO below). These plugins come with examples specific to those
    languages, and documentation on common issues related to using those
    languages with FFI. In most cases these are available for easy adoption
    for those with the know-how or the willingness to learn. If your
    language doesn't have a plugin YET, that is just because you haven't
    written it yet.

SUPPORT

    IRC: #native on irc.perl.org

    (click for instant chat room login)
    <http://chat.mibbit.com/#native@irc.perl.org>

    If something does not work the way you think it should, or if you have
    a feature request, please open an issue on this project's GitHub Issue
    tracker:

    https://github.com/perlFFI/FFI-Platypus/issues

CONTRIBUTING

    If you have implemented a new feature or fixed a bug then you may make
    a pull request on this project's GitHub repository:

    https://github.com/PerlFFI/FFI-Platypus/pulls

    This project is developed using Dist::Zilla. The project's git
    repository also comes with the Makefile.PL file necessary for building,
    testing (and even installing if necessary) without Dist::Zilla. Please
    keep in mind though that these files are generated so if changes need
    to be made to those files they should be done through the project's
    dist.ini file. If you do use Dist::Zilla and already have the necessary
    plugins installed, then I encourage you to run dzil test before making
    any pull requests. This is not a requirement, however, I am happy to
    integrate especially smaller patches that need tweaking to fit the
    project standards. I may push back and ask you to write a test case or
    alter the formatting of a patch depending on the amount of time I have
    and the amount of code that your patch touches.

    This project's GitHub issue tracker listed above is not Write-Only. If
    you want to contribute then feel free to browse through the existing
    issues and see if there is something you feel you might be good at and
    take a whack at the problem. I frequently open issues myself that I
    hope will be accomplished by someone in the future but do not have time
    to immediately implement myself.

    Another good area to help out in is documentation. I try to make sure
    that there is good document coverage, that is there should be
    documentation describing all the public features and warnings about
    common pitfalls, but an outsider's or alternate view point on such
    things would be welcome; if you see something confusing or lacks
    sufficient detail I encourage documentation only pull requests to
    improve things.

    The Platypus distribution comes with a test library named libtest that
    is normally automatically built by ./Build test. If you prefer to use
    prove or run tests directly, you can use the ./Build libtest command to
    build it. Example:

     % perl Makefile.PL
     % make
     % make ffi-test
     % prove -bv t
     # or an individual test
     % perl -Mblib t/ffi_platypus_memory.t

    The build process also respects these environment variables:

    FFI_PLATYPUS_DEBUG_FAKE32

      When building Platypus on 32 bit Perls, it will use the Math::Int64 C
      API and make Math::Int64 a prerequisite. Setting this environment
      variable will force Platypus to build with both of those options on a
      64 bit Perl as well.

       % env FFI_PLATYPUS_DEBUG_FAKE32=1 perl Makefile.PL
       DEBUG_FAKE32:
         + making Math::Int64 a prereq
         + Using Math::Int64's C API to manipulate 64 bit values
       Generating a Unix-style Makefile
       Writing Makefile for FFI::Platypus
       Writing MYMETA.yml and MYMETA.json
       %

    FFI_PLATYPUS_NO_ALLOCA

      Platypus uses the non-standard and somewhat controversial C function
      alloca by default on platforms that support it. I believe that
      Platypus uses it responsibly to allocate small amounts of memory for
      argument type parameters, and does not use it to allocate large
      structures like arrays or buffers. If you prefer not to use alloca
      despite these precautions, then you can turn its use off by setting
      this environment variable when you run Makefile.PL:

       helix% env FFI_PLATYPUS_NO_ALLOCA=1 perl Makefile.PL
       NO_ALLOCA:
         + alloca() will not be used, even if your platform supports it.
       Generating a Unix-style Makefile
       Writing Makefile for FFI::Platypus
       Writing MYMETA.yml and MYMETA.json

    V

      When building platypus may hide some of the excessive output when
      probing and building, unless you set V to a true value.

       % env V=1 perl Makefile.PL
       % make V=1
       ...

 Coding Guidelines

      * Do not hesitate to make code contribution. Making useful
      contributions is more important than following byzantine bureaucratic
      coding regulations. We can always tweak things later.

      * Please make an effort to follow existing coding style when making
      pull requests.

      * Platypus supports all production Perl releases since 5.8.1. For
      that reason, please do not introduce any code that requires a newer
      version of Perl.

 Performance Testing

    As Mark Twain was fond of saying there are four types of lies: lies,
    damn lies, statistics and benchmarks. That being said, it can sometimes
    be helpful to compare the runtime performance of Platypus if you are
    making significant changes to the Platypus Core. For that I use
    `FFI-Performance`, which can be found in my GitHub repository here:

    https://github.com/PerlFFI/FFI-Performance

 System integrators

    This distribution uses Alien::FFI in fallback mode, meaning if the
    system doesn't provide pkg-config and libffi it will attempt to
    download libffi and build it from source. If you are including Platypus
    in a larger system (for example a Linux distribution) you only need to
    make sure to declare pkg-config or pkgconf and the development package
    for libffi as prereqs for this module.

SEE ALSO

 Extending Platypus

    FFI::Platypus::Type

      Type definitions for Platypus.

    FFI::Platypus::Record

      Define structured data records (C "structs") for use with Platypus.

    FFI::C

      Another interface for defining structured data records for use with
      Platypus. Its advantage over FFI::Platypus::Record is that it
      supports unions and nested data structures. Its disadvantage is that
      it doesn't support passing structs by-value.

    FFI::Platypus::API

      The custom types API for Platypus.

    FFI::Platypus::Memory

      Memory functions for FFI.

 Languages

    FFI::TinyCC

      JIT C compiler for FFI.

    FFI::Platypus::Lang::C

      Documentation and tools for using Platypus with the C programming
      language

    FFI::Platypus::Lang::CPP

      Documentation and tools for using Platypus with the C++ programming
      language

    FFI::Platypus::Lang::Fortran

      Documentation and tools for using Platypus with Fortran

    FFI::Platypus::Lang::Go

      Documentation and tools for using Platypus with Go

    FFI::Platypus::Lang::Pascal

      Documentation and tools for using Platypus with Free Pascal

    FFI::Platypus::Lang::Rust

      Documentation and tools for using Platypus with the Rust programming
      language

    FFI::Platypus::Lang::ASM

      Documentation and tools for using Platypus with the Assembly

    FFI::Platypus::Lang::Win32

      Documentation and tools for using Platypus with the Win32 API.

    Wasm and Wasm::Wasmtime

      Modules for writing WebAssembly bindings in Perl. This allows you to
      call functions written in any language supported by WebAssembly.
      These modules are also implemented using Platypus.

 Other Tools Related Tools Useful for FFI

    FFI::CheckLib

      Find dynamic libraries in a portable way.

    Convert::Binary::C

      A great interface for decoding C data structures, including structs,
      enums, #defines and more.

    pack and unpack

      Native to Perl functions that can be used to decode C struct types.

    C::Scan

      This module can extract constants and other useful objects from C
      header files that may be relevant to an FFI application. One downside
      is that its use may require development packages to be installed.

 Other Foreign Function Interfaces

    Dyn

      A wrapper around dyncall <https://dyncall.org>, which is itself an
      alternative to libffi <https://sourceware.org/libffi/>.

    NativeCall

      Promising interface to Platypus inspired by Raku.

    Win32::API

      Microsoft Windows specific FFI style interface.

    Ctypes <https://gitorious.org/perl-ctypes>

      Ctypes was intended as a FFI style interface for Perl, but was never
      part of CPAN, and at least the last time I tried it did not work with
      recent versions of Perl.

    FFI

      Older, simpler, less featureful FFI. It used to be implemented using
      FSF's ffcall. Because ffcall has been unsupported for some time, I
      reimplemented this module using FFI::Platypus.

    C::DynaLib

      Another FFI for Perl that doesn't appear to have worked for a long
      time.

    C::Blocks

      Embed a tiny C compiler into your Perl scripts.

    P5NCI

      Yet another FFI like interface that does not appear to be supported
      or under development anymore.

 Other

    Alien::FFI

      Provides libffi for Platypus during its configuration and build
      stages.

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

    In addition to the contributors mentioned below, I would like to
    acknowledge Brock Wilcox (AWWAIID) and Meredith Howard (MHOWARD) whose
    work on FFI::Sweet not only helped me get started with FFI but
    significantly influenced the design of Platypus.

    Dan Book, who goes by Grinnz on IRC for answering user questions about
    FFI and Platypus.

    In addition I'd like to thank Alessandro Ghedini (ALEXBIO) whose work
    on another Perl FFI library helped drive some of the development ideas
    for FFI::Platypus.

AUTHOR

    Author: Graham Ollis <plicease@cpan.org>

    Contributors:

    Bakkiaraj Murugesan (bakkiaraj)

    Dylan Cali (calid)

    pipcet

    Zaki Mughal (zmughal)

    Fitz Elliott (felliott)

    Vickenty Fesunov (vyf)

    Gregor Herrmann (gregoa)

    Shlomi Fish (shlomif)

    Damyan Ivanov

    Ilya Pavlov (Ilya33)

    Petr Písař (ppisar)

    Mohammad S Anwar (MANWAR)

    Håkon Hægland (hakonhagland, HAKONH)

    Meredith (merrilymeredith, MHOWARD)

    Diab Jerius (DJERIUS)

    Eric Brine (IKEGAMI)

    szTheory

    José Joaquín Atria (JJATRIA)

    Pete Houston (openstrike, HOUSTON)

COPYRIGHT AND LICENSE

    This software is copyright (c) 2015-2022 by Graham Ollis.

    This is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under
    the same terms as the Perl 5 programming language system itself.