Base64(3)             User Contributed Perl Documentation            Base64(3)

       MIME::Base64 - Encoding and decoding of base64 strings

        use MIME::Base64;

        $encoded = encode_base64('Aladdin:open sesame');
        $decoded = decode_base64($encoded);

       This module provides functions to encode and decode strings into and
       from the base64 encoding specified in RFC 2045 - MIME (Multipurpose
       Internet Mail Extensions). The base64 encoding is designed to represent
       arbitrary sequences of octets in a form that need not be humanly read-
       able. A 65-character subset ([A-Za-z0-9+/=]) of US-ASCII is used,
       enabling 6 bits to be represented per printable character.

       The following functions are provided:

       encode_base64($str, $eol);
           Encode data by calling the encode_base64() function.  The first
           argument is the string to encode.  The second argument is the line-
           ending sequence to use.  It is optional and defaults to "\n".  The
           returned encoded string is broken into lines of no more than 76
           characters each and it will end with $eol unless it is empty.  Pass
           an empty string as second argument if you do not want the encoded
           string to be broken into lines.

           Decode a base64 string by calling the decode_base64() function.
           This function takes a single argument which is the string to decode
           and returns the decoded data.

           Any character not part of the 65-character base64 subset is
           silently ignored.  Characters occurring after a '=' padding charac-
           ter are never decoded.

           If the length of the string to decode, after ignoring non-base64
           chars, is not a multiple of 4 or if padding occurs too early, then
           a warning is generated if perl is running under "-w".

       If you prefer not to import these routines into your namespace, you can
       call them as:

           use MIME::Base64 ();
           $encoded = MIME::Base64::encode($decoded);
           $decoded = MIME::Base64::decode($encoded);

       The following warnings can be generated if perl is invoked with the
       "-w" switch:

       Premature end of base64 data
           The number of characters to decode is not a multiple of 4.  Legal
           base64 data should be padded with one or two "=" characters to make
           its length a multiple of 4.  The decoded result will be the same
           whether the padding is present or not.

       Premature padding of base64 data
           The '=' padding character occurs as the first or second character
           in a base64 quartet.

       The following exception can be raised:

       Wide character in subroutine entry
           The string passed to encode_base64() contains characters with code
           above 255.  The base64 encoding is only defined for single-byte
           characters.  Use the Encode module to select the byte encoding you

       If you want to encode a large file, you should encode it in chunks that
       are a multiple of 57 bytes.  This ensures that the base64 lines line up
       and that you do not end up with padding in the middle. 57 bytes of data
       fills one complete base64 line (76 == 57*4/3):

          use MIME::Base64 qw(encode_base64);

          open(FILE, "/var/log/wtmp") or die "$!";
          while (read(FILE, $buf, 60*57)) {
              print encode_base64($buf);

       or if you know you have enough memory

          use MIME::Base64 qw(encode_base64);
          local($/) = undef;  # slurp
          print encode_base64(<STDIN>);

       The same approach as a command line:

          perl -MMIME::Base64 -0777 -ne 'print encode_base64($_)' <file

       Decoding does not need slurp mode if every line contains a multiple of
       four base64 chars:

          perl -MMIME::Base64 -ne 'print decode_base64($_)' <file

       Perl v5.8 and better allow extended Unicode characters in strings.
       Such strings cannot be encoded directly, as the base64 encoding is only
       defined for single-byte characters.  The solution is to use the Encode
       module to select the byte encoding you want.  For example:

           use MIME::Base64 qw(encode_base64);
           use Encode qw(encode);

           $encoded = encode_base64(encode("UTF-8", "\x{FFFF}\n"));
           print $encoded;

       Copyright 1995-1999, 2001-2004 Gisle Aas.

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

       Distantly based on LWP::Base64 written by Martijn Koster
       <> and Joerg Reichelt <> and
       code posted to comp.lang.perl <3pd2lp$> by Hans
       Mulder <>

       The XS implementation uses code from metamail.  Copyright 1991 Bell
       Communications Research, Inc. (Bellcore)


perl v5.8.6                       2005-11-29                         Base64(3)