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Term::ANSIColor 4.06

Copyright 1996-1998, 2000-2002, 2005-2006, 2008-2016 Russ Allbery rra@cpan.org. Copyright 1996 Zenin. Copyright 2012 Kurt Starsinic kstarsinic@gmail.com. This software is distributed under the same terms as Perl itself. Please see the section License below for more information.


Term::ANSIColor provides constants and simple functions for setting ANSI text attributes, most notably colors. It can be used to set the current text attributes or to apply a set of attributes to a string and reset the current text attributes at the end of that string. Eight-color, sixteen-color, and 256-color escape sequences are all supported.


This Perl module is a simple and convenient interface to the ANSI terminal escape sequences for color (from ECMA-48, also included in ISO 6429). The color sequences are provided in two forms, either as constants for each color or via a function that takes the names of colors and returns the appropriate escape codes or wraps them around the provided text. The non-color text style codes from ANSI X3.64 (bold, dark, underline, and reverse, for example), which were also included in ECMA-48 and ISO 6429, are also supported. Also supported are the extended colors used for sixteen-color and 256-color emulators.

This module is very stable, and I've used it in a wide variety of applications. It has been included in the core Perl distribution starting with version 5.6.0, so you don't need to download and install it yourself unless you have an old version of Perl or need a newer version of the module than comes with your version of Perl. I continue to maintain it as a separate module, and the version included in Perl is resynced with mine before each release.

The original module came out of a discussion in comp.lang.perl.misc and is a combination of two approaches, one with constants by Zenin and one with functions that I wrote. I offered to maintain a combined module that included both approaches.


Term::ANSIColor is written in pure Perl and has no module dependencies that aren't found in Perl core. It should work with any version of Perl after 5.6, although it hasn't been tested with old versions in some time.

In order to actually see color, you will need to use a terminal window that supports the ANSI escape sequences for color. Any recent version of xterm, most xterm derivatives and replacements, and most telnet and ssh clients for Windows and Macintosh should work, as will the MacOS X Terminal application (although Terminal.app reportedly doesn't support 256 colors). The console windows for Windows NT and Windows 2000 will not work, as they do not even attempt to support ANSI X3.64.

For a complete (to my current knowledge) compatibility list, see the Term::ANSIColor module documentation. If you have any additions to the table in the documentation, please send them to me.

The test suite requires Test::More (part of Perl since 5.6.2). The following additional Perl modules will be used by the test suite if present:

  • Devel::Cover
  • Test::MinimumVersion
  • Test::Perl::Critic
  • Test::Pod
  • Test::Pod::Coverage
  • Test::Spelling
  • Test::Strict
  • Test::Synopsis
  • Test::Warn

All are available on CPAN. Those tests will be skipped if the modules are not available.

To enable tests that don't detect functionality problems but are used to sanity-check the release, set the environment variable RELEASE_TESTING to a true value. To enable tests that may be sensitive to the local environment or that produce a lot of false positives without uncovering many problems, set the environment variable AUTHOR_TESTING to a true value.

Building and Installation

Term::ANSIColor uses ExtUtils::MakeMaker and can be installed using the same process as any other ExtUtils::MakeMaker module:

    perl Makefile.PL
    make test
    make install

You'll probably need to do the last as root unless you're installing into a local Perl module tree in your home directory.


The Term::ANSIColor web page will always have the current version of this package, the current documentation, and pointers to any additional resources.

For bug tracking, use the CPAN bug tracker. However, please be aware that I tend to be extremely busy and work projects often take priority. I'll save your mail and get to it as soon as I can, but it may take me a couple of months.

Source Repository

Term::ANSIColor is maintained using Git. You can access the current source on GitHub or by cloning the repository at:


or view the repository on the web.

The eyrie.org repository is the canonical one, maintained by the author, but using GitHub is probably more convenient for most purposes. Pull requests are gratefully reviewed and normally accepted. It's probably better to use the CPAN bug tracker than GitHub issues, though, to keep all Perl module issues in the same place.


The Term::ANSIColor package as a whole is covered by the following copyright statement and license:

Copyright 1996-1998, 2000-2002, 2005-2006, 2008-2016 Russ Allbery rra@cpan.org

Copyright 1996 Zenin

Copyright 2012 Kurt Starsinic kstarsinic@gmail.com

This program is free software; you may redistribute it and/or modify it under the same terms as Perl itself. This means that you may choose between the two licenses that Perl is released under: the GNU GPL and the Artistic License. Please see your Perl distribution for the details and copies of the licenses.

PUSH/POP support submitted 2007 by openmethods.com voice solutions

Some files in this distribution are individually released under different licenses, all of which are compatible with the above general package license but which may require preservation of additional notices. All required notices, and detailed information about the licensing of each file, are recorded in the LICENSE file.

For any copyright range specified by files in this package as YYYY-ZZZZ, the range specifies every single year in that closed interval.