The following sections provide pointers for installing Perl on the most common types of computer systems.
Many computers—especially Unix and Linux computers—come with Perl already installed. (Note that Unix and Linux are essentially the same kind of operating system; Linux is a clone, or functional copy, of a Unix system.) So first check to see if Perl is already there. On Unix and Linux, type the following at a command prompt:
$ perl -v
If Perl is already installed, you'll see a message like the one I get on my Linux machine:
This is perl, v5.6.1 built for i686-linux Copyright 1987-2001, Larry Wall Perl may be copied only under the terms of either the Artistic License or the GNU General Public License, which may be found in the Perl 5 source kit. Complete documentation for Perl, including FAQ lists, should be found on this system using 'man perl' or 'perldoc perl'. If you have access to the Internet, point your browser at http://www.perl.com/, the Perl Home Page.
If Perl isn't installed, you'll get a message like this:
perl: command not found
If you get this message, and you're on a shared Unix system at a university or business, be sure to check with the system administrator, because Perl may indeed be installed, but your environment may not be set to find it. (Or, the system administrator may say, "You need Perl? Okay, I'll install it for you.")
On Windows or Macintosh, look at the program menus, or use the find program ...