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Michael Schilli > Mail-DWIM-0.02 > Mail::DWIM



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Module Version: 0.02   Source   Latest Release: Mail-DWIM-0.08


Mail::DWIM - Do-What-I-Mean Mailer


    use Mail::DWIM qw(mail);

      to      => ''
      subject => 'test message',
      text    => 'test message text'


Mail::DWIM makes it easy to send email. You just name the recipient, the subject line and the mail text and Mail::DWIM does the rest.

This module isn't for processing massive amounts of email. It is for sending casual emails without worrying about technical details.

Mail::DWIM lets you store commonly used settings (like the default sender email address or the transport mechanism) in a local configuration file, so that you don't have to repeat settings in your program code every time you want to send out an email. You are certainly free to override the default settings if required.

Mail::DWIM uses defaults wherever possible. So if you say

    use Mail::DWIM qw(mail);

      to      => ''
      subject => 'test message',
      text    => 'test message text',

that's enough for the mailer to send out an email to the specified address. There's no from field, so Mail::DWIM uses '' where user is the current Unix user and is the domain set in the Perl configuration ( If you want to specify a different 'From:' field, go ahead:

      from    => '',
      to      => ''
      subject => 'test message',
      text    => 'test message text',

By default, Mail::DWIM connects to a running sendmail daemon to deliver the mail. But you can also specify an SMTP server:

      to          => ''
      subject     => 'test message',
      text        => 'test message text',
      transport   => 'smtp',
      smtp_server => '',

On a given system, these settings need to be specified only once and put into a configuration file. All Mail::DWIM instances running on this system will pick them up as default settings.

Configuration files

There is a global Mail::DWIM configuration file in /etc/maildwim with global settings and a user-specific file in ~user/.maildwim which overrides global settings. Both files are optional, and their format is YAML:

    # ~user/.maildwim
    transport: sendmail

Error Handling

By default, Mail::DWIM throws an error if something goes wrong (aka: it dies). If that's not desirable and you want it to return a true/false value code instead, set the raise_error option to a false value:

    my $rc = mail(
      raise_error => 0,
      to          => ''

    if(! $rc) {
        die "Release the hounds: ", Mail::DWIM::error();

The detailed error message is available by calling Mail::DWIM::error().

Attaching files

If you want to include an image, a PDF files or some other attachment in an email, use the attach parameter

      to          => '',
      subject     => 'Pics of my new dog',
      attach      => ['doggie1.jpg', 'doggie2.jpg'],
      text        => "Hey, here's two cute pictures of Fritz :)",

Sending HTML Emails

Many people hate HTML emails, but if you also attach a plaintext version for people with arcane email readers, everybody is happy. Mail::DWIM makes this easy with the html_compat option:

      to          => ''
      subject     => 'test message',
      html_compat => 1,
      text        => 'This is an <b>HTML</b> email.'

This will create two attachments, the first one as plain text (generated by HTML::Text to the best of its abilities), followed by the specified HTML message marked as content-type text/html. Non-HTML mail readers will pick up the first one, and Outlook-using marketroids get fancy HTML. Everytext wins.

Test Mode

If the environment variable MAIL_DWIM_TEST is set to a filename, Mail::DWIM prepares mail as usual, but doesn't send it off using the specified transport mechanism. Instead, it appends outgoing mail ot the specified file.

Mail::DWIM's test suite uses this mode to run a regression test without needing an MTA.

Why another Mail Module?

The problem with other Mail:: or Email:: modules on CPAN is that they expose more options than the casual user needs. Why create a mailer object, call its accessors and then its send method if all I want to do is call a function that works similarily to the Unix mail program?

Mail::DWIM tries to be as 'Do-What-I-mean' as the venerable Unix mail command. Noboby has to read its documentation to use it:

    $ mail
    Subject: foobar
    quack! quack!


Copyright 2007 by Mike Schilli, all rights reserved. This program is free software, you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the same terms as Perl itself.


2007, Mike Schilli <>

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