Install the VI Perl Toolkit on OS X

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Installing the VI Perl Toolkit on OS X

by Wil van Antwerpen

This document describes the preferred way on how-to get the VI Perl Toolkit working on OS X.

We are doing this by using the CPAN functionality of Perl which is already installed on your Mac. I will walk you through how-to set this up from the start using the CPAN Network.

We have also tried to do this by using MacPorts. but as it turns out MacPorts will give you problems due to it changing paths and installing its own complete perl environment. For now we are not aware of a way to use the toolkit using Macports.

Installing Developer Tools

The VI Perl Toolkit needs to get a few extra modules added to the current perl setup that is by default installed on Mac OS X. In order to get these modules we use CPAN. CPAN has some prerequisites of its own that we are going to have to satisfy first.

The main issue is that your system must have "make" installed. The most straightforward way to get that package installed is to take your original OS X installation disk and install Developer Tools (XcodeTools.mpkg) which can be found under Option Installs on the DVD. Just keep the default settings and you'll be fine.

It is a bit big though (over 2GB) so it is a steep requirement for just getting the VI Perl toolkit to work OK. If you don't have the space, the part from the developer tools that is needed is the BSD "make" command and a number of other commands. It should be sufficient to install the UNIX Development Support (or BSD SDK) sub-package of the Developer Tools.

Getting the Perl VI Toolkit SDK

First step is to download the latest perl SDK from:

for both OS X Leopard and Snow Leopard I downloaded the same 32 bits .tar.gz linux installer.

After downloading unpack the archive by running

tar -xvzf VMware-vSphere-SDK-for-Perl-4.0.0-161974.i386.tar.gz 

from the command line. cd into the new vmware-vsphere-cli-distrib/ folder

cd vmware-vsphere-cli-distrib/

and run:


this will most likely return the following warnings:

Warning: prerequisite Class::MethodMaker 2.08 not found.
Warning: prerequisite Crypt::SSLeay 0.51 not found.
Warning: prerequisite SOAP::Lite 0.67 not found.
Warning: prerequisite UUID 0.03 not found.
Writing Makefile for VIPerlToolkit

The warnings we see here are the modules we need to install for perl that are missing in order for getting the toolkit to work. So we are going to install these modules first, before we can continue with our main installation.

Installing missing perl dependencies

So now we need to setup CPAN unless you already have CPAN working, in that case you can skip the installation part.

CPAN: Is /usr/local setup?

By default cpan will try to install some documentation under the /usr/local folder, so this folder has to exist and it needs to have the correct ownership privileges setup. Check if the folder already exists:

$ ls /usr/
X11		bin		lib		sbin		standalone
X11R6		include		libexec		share

In my case it isn't there yet, so create it:

$ mkdir /usr/local
mkdir: /usr/local: Permission denied

Ha!.. you can't create the folder unless you have elevated rights (of course)

$ sudo mkdir /usr/local

So now we created the folder, but as you will see it is owned by root and we can't install our packages in there unless we allow our user.

$ ls -alh /usr/local
total 0
drwxr-xr-x   2 root  wheel    68B Feb 27 01:06 .
drwxr-xr-x@ 12 root  wheel   408B Feb 27 01:06 ..

In my case the username is "topaz", replace "topaz" with your username below:

$ sudo chown topaz:topaz /usr/local
$ ls -alh /usr/local
total 0
drwxr-xr-x   2 topaz topaz    68B Feb 27 01:06 .
drwxr-xr-x@ 12 topaz topaz   408B Feb 27 01:06 ..

CPAN: Configuration

With the developer tools setup you now have to configure CPAN. You can also use this step if you want to change your CPAN configuration. Configuring CPAN makes sure that the tools find the necessary commands on your system (make et al). To do that, run:

perl -MCPAN -e shell
cpan> o conf init

This throws up a bunch of questions.

/Users/topaz/.cpan/CPAN/ initialized.

CPAN is the world-wide archive of perl resources. It consists of about 100 sites that all replicate  the same contents all around the globe. Many countries have at least one CPAN site already. The  resources found on CPAN are easily accessible with the module. If you want to use, you have to configure it properly.

If you do not want to enter a dialog now, you can answer 'no' to this question and I'll try to autoconfigure. (Note: you can revisit this dialog anytime later by typing 'o conf init' at the cpan prompt.)

Are you ready for manual configuration? [yes]

You can take the defaults for pretty much all of them, so just press enter. It is fine if the configuration script doesn't find programs for things like lynx, wget, ncftp, ftp etcetera...

The main things to select are country to download from and the site(s) which you want to use for the repositories. Just make the most logical selections here.

CPAN: Installing the VI Perl Toolkit dependencies

Now we'll get the missing dependencies by running them one by one. We could add all of these on a single line, but we want it to be easy to see if the install was successful. This is why we are running them one by one.

cpan Class::MethodMaker

this should now end with:

Appending installation info to /Library/Perl/Updates/5.8.8/darwin-thread-multi-2level/perllocal.pod
 /usr/bin/make install  -- OK

So continue with the next one:

cpan Crypt::SSLeay 

Just choose the defaults if questions are asked. As long as it ends like the previous package you are fine.

Next up is:

cpan SOAP::Lite

Same same, choose defaults. In my setup it nagged that I missed out on some dependencies of its own and if I wanted to add those.. Sure.. let the installer add anything it suggests.


cpan UUID

Which down here installed fine too, so now we can finally get back to installing the VI Perl Toolkit.

Install VI Perl Toolkit

Now go back to the folder where you unpacked the VI Perl Toolkit:

Warning: prerequisite UUID 0.03 not found. We have 0.020.
Writing Makefile for VIPerlToolkit

That UUID is not yet version 0.03 seems to be OK (On Snow Leopard it is 0.04) With this version of the toolkit, there are no tests defined for the make file so we are going to install it directly:

sudo make install
Manifying blib/man3/VMware::VIM25Runtime.3pm
Manifying blib/man3/VMware::VIM2Stub.3pm
Manifying blib/man3/VMware::VIM25Stub.3pm
Manifying blib/man3/VMware::VIM2Runtime.3pm
Installing /Library/Perl/5.8.8/
Installing /Library/Perl/5.8.8/VMware/
Installing /Library/Perl/5.8.8/VMware/
 many more lines here
Installing /usr/share/doc/vmware-viperl/doc/samples/vm/
Installing /usr/share/doc/vmware-viperl/doc/samples/vm/
Installing /usr/share/doc/vmware-viperl/doc/samples/WSMan/
Installing /usr/share/doc/vmware-viperl/doc/samples/WSMan/
Installing /usr/share/doc/vmware-viperl/doc/samples/WSMan/
Installing /usr/share/doc/vmware-viperl/doc/samples/WSMan/

and that's how a successful Perl Toolkit install looks like.

If you want you can now delete your unpacked setup files and VI Perl tar.gz file. You may want to keep the makefile around if you later want to uninstall this.

Uninstall Developer Tools and cleaning up CPAN

If you want to uninstall the Developer Tools, you need to run the command:

/Developer/Library/uninstall-devtools --mode=all

Be aware that you can then no longer use CPAN or Macports to extend your system!

From CPAN you can remove an installed module by running a clean command. Such as:

cpan clean Class::MethodMaker

This is a troubleshoot step and sometimes needed if a module gets stuck while trying to install it. Again don't remove any module your install depends on.

If CPAN still gives problems, then you can remove your local CPAN configuration and cache directory by running:

rm -r ~/.cpan

External link

The following link turned out to be very helpful while I was trying to get this to work:

Managing VMware Infrastructure 3 (VI3) from OS X (10.5.1 Leopard)