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Chapter 4

Comparison of the Various CGI programming Libraries


CONTENTS


There are many languages used for CGI programming. With each of those different languages, there is almost always more than one library for CGI. This chapter looks at the libraries, what they have to offer, and rates them.

All of the short synopses of the libraries were rewritten from information taken from the documentation of the library, which is the property of the respective authors.

CGI Libraries for C Programming

The CGI Libraries for the C language that we will review and compare are the following:

Of all of these CGI libraries for the C language, CGIc is the best for three simple reasons: It is actively maintained, has great documentation, and has good support.

CGIc 1.05

Of the CGI libraries I tested, CGIc had the best documentation and is the only one to offer more than one level of support. Combined with the fact that it is moderately easy to use, this library is the best all-around choice.

CGIc has the following features:

The following lists CGIc's functions and procedures and contains a short synopsis of each. If you want more information, see the documentation that comes with CGIc.

The following is the rest of the information you need to know about the CGIc library:

The following is a summary of each sample program:

If you would like more information about CGIc, try the following:

CGI-HTML 1.21

Of the CGI libraries I tested, CGI-HTML 1.21 was the second best. Unfortunately, it is still in major development and does not offer priority support. On the good side, it offers source code, and it is completely free.

Following are the features of CGI-HTML 1.21:

The following lists the procedures and functions of CGI-HTML 1.21 and includes a short synopsis of each. For more information, see the documentation that comes with the library.

The following describes the documentation and support available for CGI-HTML:

The following contains a summary of each sample program:

The following describes compatibility information about CGI-HTML:

If you would like more information about CGI-HTML, you can find it at the following places:

The C++ CGI Class Libraries

Of the two C++ class libraries for CGI that I could find, AHTML is easily the best of the two. It is constantly updated, contains many neat features, and is very easy to use.

AHTML

AHTML is a great C++ class library, and although I am biased towards C++ as a language (not C with a little C++ thrown in, just pure C++), there is no denying it is such. It is the only CGI library of any language to include encryption and encoding/decoding to 4-bit hex and 7-bit alpha.

Following are the features of AHTML:

The following lists the procedures and functions of AHTML and contains a short synopsis of each. For more information, see the documentation. Unfortunately, by the time this book is printed, some of the class names will have been added and or changed. The Web page and the included documentation are great at providing a quick reference.

The following describes the compatibility information for AHTML:

If you would like more information about AHTML, you can find it at the following places:

Kelly Black's CGI C++ Classes

This C++ class library appears to have been created in someone's spare time, given the fact that the docs don't exist and it is missing some features. The thing it does have going for it, though, is the fact that it supports the creation of forms.

The author does not provide a list of features in the documentation, and it is not possible to tell just from looking at the code, mainly because the code is not documented well enough.

As for a list of functions and procedures, some of the procedures have comments, but not enough to make a quick reference out of.

The following describes documentation and support available for these CGI classes:

The following contains a summary of each sample program:

The following describes the compatibility of the CGI classes.

If you would like more information about the CGI classes, you can find it at the following places:

Perl Libraries

Unlike the other languages, there is a basically standard library for CGI programming in Perl: CGI-Lib.

CGI-Lib

The following lists the features of CGI-Lib:

The following contains the CGI-Lib procedures and functions and a short synopsis of each. For more information, see the documentation.

The following describes documentation and support available for CGI-Lib:

The following describes the compatibility information on CGI-Lib:

If you would like more information about CGI-Lib, you can find it in the following places:

Summary

That just about does it for our look at the various CGI libraries that are available to developers. The next chapter explores designing your CGI application.