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namespace::clean − Keep imports and functions out of your namespace


  package Foo;
  use warnings;
  use strict;
  use Carp qw(croak);   # 'croak' will be removed
  sub bar { 23 }        # 'bar' will be removed
  # remove all previously defined functions
  use namespace::clean;
  sub baz { bar() }     # 'baz' still defined, 'bar' still bound
  # begin to collection function names from here again
  no namespace::clean;
  sub quux { baz() }    # 'quux' will be removed
  # remove all functions defined after the 'no' unimport
  use namespace::clean;
  # Will print: 'No', 'No', 'Yes' and 'No'
  print +(__PACKAGE__−>can('croak') ? 'Yes' : 'No'), "\n";
  print +(__PACKAGE__−>can('bar')   ? 'Yes' : 'No'), "\n";
  print +(__PACKAGE__−>can('baz')   ? 'Yes' : 'No'), "\n";
  print +(__PACKAGE__−>can('quux')  ? 'Yes' : 'No'), "\n";


Keeping packages clean
When you define a function, or import one, into a Perl package, it will naturally also be available as a method. This does not per se cause problems, but it can complicate subclassing and, for example, plugin classes that are included via multiple inheritance by loading them as base classes.

The "namespace::clean" pragma will remove all previously declared or imported symbols at the end of the current package’s compile cycle. Functions called in the package itself will still be bound by their name, but they won’t show up as methods on your class or instances.

By unimporting via "no" you can tell "namespace::clean" to start collecting functions for the next "use namespace::clean;" specification.

You can use the "−except" flag to tell "namespace::clean" that you don’t want it to remove a certain function or method. A common use would be a module exporting an "import" method along with some functions:

  use ModuleExportingImport;
  use namespace::clean −except => [qw( import )];

If you just want to "−except" a single sub, you can pass it directly. For more than one value you have to use an array reference.

Explicitly removing functions when your scope is compiled
It is also possible to explicitly tell "namespace::clean" what packages to remove when the surrounding scope has finished compiling. Here is an example:

  package Foo;
  use strict;
  # blessed NOT available
  sub my_class {
      use Scalar::Util qw( blessed );
      use namespace::clean qw( blessed );
      # blessed available
      return blessed shift;
  # blessed NOT available

When using "namespace::clean" together with Moose you want to keep the installed "meta" method. So your classes should look like:

  package Foo;
  use Moose;
  use namespace::clean −except => 'meta';

Same goes for Moose::Role.

Cleaning other packages
You can tell "namespace::clean" that you want to clean up another package instead of the one importing. To do this you have to pass in the "−cleanee" option like this:

  package My::MooseX::namespace::clean;
  use strict;
  use namespace::clean (); # no cleanup, just load
  sub import {
        −cleanee => scalar(caller),
        −except  => 'meta',

If you don’t care about "namespace::clean"s discover−and−"−except" logic, and just want to remove subroutines, try "clean_subroutines".


This exposes the actual subroutine-removal logic.

  namespace::clean−>clean_subroutines($cleanee, qw( subA subB ));

will remove "subA" and "subB" from $cleanee. Note that this will remove the subroutines immediately and not wait for scope end. If you want to have this effect at a specific time (e.g. "namespace::clean" acts on scope compile end) it is your responsibility to make sure it runs at that time.

Makes a snapshot of the current defined functions and installs a B::Hooks::EndOfScope hook in the current scope to invoke the cleanups.

This method will be called when you do a

  no namespace::clean;

It will start a new section of code that defines functions to clean up.

This returns a reference to a hash in a passed package containing information about function names included and excluded from removal.

Takes a class as argument and returns all currently defined functions in it as a hash reference with the function name as key and a typeglob reference to the symbol as value.


This module works through the effect that a

  delete $SomePackage::{foo};

will remove the "foo" symbol from $SomePackage for run time lookups (e.g., method calls) but will leave the entry alive to be called by already resolved names in the package itself. "namespace::clean" will restore and therefor in effect keep all glob slots that aren’t "CODE".

A test file has been added to the perl core to ensure that this behaviour will be stable in future releases.

Just for completeness sake, if you want to remove the symbol completely, use "undef" instead.




Many thanks to Matt S Trout for the inspiration on the whole idea.


Robert ’phaylon’ Sedlacek <rs AT 474 DOT at>

Florian Ragwitz <rafl AT debian DOT org>

Jesse Luehrs <doy AT tozt DOT net>

Peter Rabbitson <ribasushi AT cpan DOT org>

Father Chrysostomos <sprout AT cpan DOT org>


This software is copyright (c) 2011 by " AUTHORS "

This is free software; you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the same terms as the Perl 5 programming language system itself.