Monthly Archives: September 2011

Fixed temporary files handling in HTTP::DAV

It's more than 3 years already that I took over maintainership for HTTP::DAV. I've been fixing several bugs, last one today (and 0.45 is just out on CPAN), and I have to say that it was a fantastic exercise, that I really suggest to anyone even moderately interested in open source development and improving their own programming skills.

Here's how it works:

  • Pick a CPAN distribution that has been put up for adoption, or one that your $work depends on (my case for HTTP::DAV)
  • Contact its author or current maintainer
  • Take a look at its RT queue (usually it's something like
  • Pick whatever bug you fancy from the list
  • Write a test case for it, naming it t/RT_[ticket_number].t
  • Fix the bug in the code, and see your test case pass

That's what I've been trying to do with HTTP::DAV, that was back then completely unknown code to me. I hope the results are decent. At least there hasn't been any regression reported so far… :-)

Enjoy, and

Got maintainership of Bookmarks::Parser, and gave back some Opera love to it

A new project just came in last week. We need to analyze Opera desktop builds (like this one) and extract all settings from them and populate a nice database.

We can do that quite easily since Opera stores most of its settings as either .ini or bookmarks (.adr) files.

In Perl land, we can use Config::IniFiles and Bookmarks::Parser to do most of this. We had to subclass Config::IniFiles to skip the non-standard Opera Preferences file ... first line, while Bookmarks::Parser, that includes an Opera-specific Bookmarks::Opera class, wasn't updated with all the latest Opera-specific properties we use in our Desktop builds.

Working on our first prototype of this build cataloger tool, we "patched" Bookmarks::Opera to do what we needed, but the solution that makes the most long-term sense is to bring back some love upstream, so have our patches in the CPAN version of Bookmarks::Parser. It's what makes the most sense to me anyway, so I usually always try to get in touch with the current author or maintainer.

That's what I did in this case too, with great results. I was given co-maintainer bit in less than 24 hours. Rest of the story is in the github repository now:

  • Fixed a couple of bad bugs in the Opera bookmarks parser
  • Added test cases for those bugs, plus a sample of our current Desktop build bookmarks file

Then, since I had a spare couple of hours during this weekend:

  • I fixed all bugs ever reported in the RT queue (2 LOL), which were more than 5 years old
  • Added some documentation love

So, now we'll just package the stock CPAN version of Bookmarks::Parser instead of maintaining our own patched version, plus whoever attempts to use it to work with Opera files will be happier.

Source code, as usual, up on, and CPAN is now at v0.04.