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Nilson Santos Figueiredo Júnior > Error-TryCatch > Error::TryCatch



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Module Version: 0.07   Source  


Error::TryCatch - OO-ish Exception Handling through source filtering


  use Error::TryCatch;
  try {
          throw new Error::Generic 
                  -text => "well, no one can live in danger forever";
  catch Error::Unhandled with {
          # normal die()s are translated into Error::Unhandled exceptions
          print "caught an unhandled perl exception: $@\n";
  catch Error::NewExceptionClass with {
          # code that handles Error::NewExceptionClass
  catch Error::YetAnotherExceptions {
      # note that 'with' is optional (this differs from
  otherwise {
          # catch any other exception which might not have been caught
          my $exception_class = ref($@};
          print "someone has thrown a $exception_class exception: $@\n";
  finally {
          clean_up(); # which will always be executed
  # don't forget the trailing ';' otherwise bad things *will* happen


Error::TryCatch implements exception handling (try-catch) blocks functionality with an interface similiar to (in fact, it's almost a drop-in replacement). The main difference is that it's a source filter module.

As a source filter it can implement the same convenient interface without those nasty memory leaks and implicit anonymous subroutines (which can trick you, if you're not careful). Also after source parsing it converts the code into "native" perl code, so it's probably a little faster than's approach.

And, well. As far as I can tell, Error::TryCatch accomplishes its duty nicely.


The interface is pretty straight-forward. I think that reading the synopsis is enough documentation.

If you *really* need an explanation about how exception handling blocks work, you should take a look at documentation. The only clause which I chose not to implement was the 'except' clause, since I consider it rather "exotic" and pretty much useless (at least for my purposes). And it would be a pain to implement.

Unlike, with Error::TryCatch you can return() from anywhere, but see CAVEATS below.


Error::TryCatch was built with exception classes in mind and will even wrap anything it catches that is not a reference into a default unhandled exception class, which defaults to Error::Unhandled (which inherits from Error::Generic).

If you want to use another exception class for any reason, you should set the package variable $Error::TryCatch::DEFAULT_EXCEPTION to the classname. There's a little gotcha, though: you need to do this *before* the module is loaded, like so:

  use warnings;
  use strict;
  BEGIN { $Error::TryCatch::DEFAULT_EXCEPTION = "Error::MyExceptionClass" }
  use Error::TryCatch;

  < ... code ... >

When creating unhandled exceptions, a single string argument (which is the original die()/throw() message) will be passed to the constructor. So, you should implement this sort of constructor.

Error::TryCatch also provides a base generic exception class (Error::Generic), which you can inherit from or not. This class provides getter/setter methods for the basic supported exception properties: package, file, line, text and value. It also defines a stringify() method, which defaults to returning the 'text' property, however it should be overriden for more complex exception classes. Besides that, Error::Generic has overloaded operators for stringifying (which calls the stringify() method) and for numeric context (where the "value" property is returned by default). It also returns true in boolean context.

For maximum compatibility with, Error::Generic is compatible with Error::Simple and should work as a drop-in replacement for it, as long as class names aren't checked.


The trailing ';' at the of the block is absolutely necessary right now. This may change in the future but, unfortunately, right now, if you forget the trailing ';' you'll get somewhat ugly errors. also needs them but, in its case, Perl always warns you about bad syntax at compile time.

Syntax errors related to '}' (maybe '{' too) become a little harder to track, since they end up confusing the parser's notion of "what a perl code block is". So be sure to balance the '{' and '}' your code. Maybe in a later version I'll come up with a better solution for this problem.

When you return from inside of an exception handling block, the "finally" clause will not execute. I thought about work-arounds for this but all of them seemed rather ugly, so I decided not to implement any of them.

Although throw() seems to work nicely, somehow I don't trust it and think that it will make bad things happen somewhere. So, since it's plain syntatic sugar, die() can be used as a replacement for it anywhere you like.

If you throw() or die() a reference which is not an object bad things may happen. If there's any demand, I'll consider using Scalar::Util's blessed() instead of just checking if it's a reference.


If you have a try-catch construct inside a string it might get filtered too (although the grammar tries to avoid id). If the try-catch construct is in a heredoc it's almost certain it will get filtered.

There needs to be at least one line (it can be an empty one) after a exception handling block. So if it's the last thing in your program, you better add a newline at the end.

Besides those, there are no other known issues. In fact, if the code is well-formed (no syntax errors) I could almost guarantee that it works as expected.

If you find any other bugs, please, report them directly to the author.


Error, Parse::RecDescent


Nilson Santos Figueiredo Junior, <>


Copyright 2005-2009 Nilson Santos Figueiredo Junior.

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

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