bigint(3perl)  Perl Programmers Reference Guide  bigint(3perl) 
NAME¶
bigint  Transparent BigInteger support for Perl
SYNOPSIS¶
use bigint; $x = 2 + 4.5,"\n"; # BigInt 6 print 2 ** 512,"\n"; # really is what you think it is print inf + 42,"\n"; # inf print NaN * 7,"\n"; # NaN print hex("0x1234567890123490"),"\n"; # Perl v5.10.0 or later { no bigint; print 2 ** 256,"\n"; # a normal Perl scalar now } # Import into current package: use bigint qw/hex oct/; print hex("0x1234567890123490"),"\n"; print oct("01234567890123490"),"\n";
DESCRIPTION¶
All operators (including basic math operations) except the range operator ".." are overloaded. Integer constants are created as proper BigInts.
Floating point constants are truncated to integer. All parts and results of expressions are also truncated.
Unlike integer, this pragma creates integer constants that are only limited in their size by the available memory and CPU time.
use integer vs. use bigint¶
There is one small difference between "use integer" and "use bigint": the former will not affect assignments to variables and the return value of some functions. "bigint" truncates these results to integer too:
# perl Minteger wle 'print 3.2' 3.2 # perl Minteger wle 'print 3.2 + 0' 3 # perl Mbigint wle 'print 3.2' 3 # perl Mbigint wle 'print 3.2 + 0' 3 # perl Mbigint wle 'print exp(1) + 0' 2 # perl Mbigint wle 'print exp(1)' 2 # perl Minteger wle 'print exp(1)' 2.71828182845905 # perl Minteger wle 'print exp(1) + 0' 2
In practice this makes seldom a difference as parts and results of expressions will be truncated anyway, but this can, for instance, affect the return value of subroutines:
sub three_integer { use integer; return 3.2; } sub three_bigint { use bigint; return 3.2; } print three_integer(), " ", three_bigint(),"\n"; # prints "3.2 3"
Options¶
bigint recognizes some options that can be passed while loading it via use. The options can (currently) be either a single letter form, or the long form. The following options exist:
 a or accuracy
 This sets the accuracy for all math operations. The argument must be
greater than or equal to zero. See Math::BigInt's bround() function
for details.
perl Mbigint=a,2 le 'print 12345+1'
Note that setting precision and accuracy at the same time is not possible.
 p or precision
 This sets the precision for all math operations. The argument can be any
integer. Negative values mean a fixed number of digits after the dot, and
are <B>ignored</B> since all operations happen in integer
space. A positive value rounds to this digit left from the dot. 0 or 1
mean round to integer and are ignore like negative values.
See Math::BigInt's bfround() function for details.
perl Mbignum=p,5 le 'print 123456789+123'
Note that setting precision and accuracy at the same time is not possible.
 t or trace
 This enables a trace mode and is primarily for debugging bigint or Math::BigInt.
 hex
 Override the builtin hex() method with a version that can handle big integers. This overrides it by exporting it to the current package. Under Perl v5.10.0 and higher, this is not so necessary, as hex() is lexically overridden in the current scope whenever the bigint pragma is active.
 oct
 Override the builtin oct() method with a version that can handle big integers. This overrides it by exporting it to the current package. Under Perl v5.10.0 and higher, this is not so necessary, as oct() is lexically overridden in the current scope whenever the bigint pragma is active.
 l, lib, try or only
 Load a different math lib, see "Math Library".
perl Mbigint=lib,GMP e 'print 2 ** 512' perl Mbigint=try,GMP e 'print 2 ** 512' perl Mbigint=only,GMP e 'print 2 ** 512'
Currently there is no way to specify more than one library on the command line. This means the following does not work:
perl Mbignum=l,GMP,Pari e 'print 2 ** 512'
This will be hopefully fixed soon ;)
 v or version
 This prints out the name and version of all modules used and then exits.
perl Mbigint=v
Math Library¶
Math with the numbers is done (by default) by a module called Math::BigInt::Calc. This is equivalent to saying:
use bigint lib => 'Calc';
You can change this by using:
use bignum lib => 'GMP';
The following would first try to find Math::BigInt::Foo, then Math::BigInt::Bar, and when this also fails, revert to Math::BigInt::Calc:
use bigint lib => 'Foo,Math::BigInt::Bar';
Using "lib" warns if none of the specified libraries can be found and Math::BigInt did fall back to one of the default libraries. To suppress this warning, use "try" instead:
use bignum try => 'GMP';
If you want the code to die instead of falling back, use "only" instead:
use bignum only => 'GMP';
Please see respective module documentation for further details.
Internal Format¶
The numbers are stored as objects, and their internals might change at anytime, especially between math operations. The objects also might belong to different classes, like Math::BigInt, or Math::BigInt::Lite. Mixing them together, even with normal scalars is not extraordinary, but normal and expected.
You should not depend on the internal format, all accesses must go through accessor methods. E.g. looking at $x>{sign} is not a good idea since there is no guaranty that the object in question has such a hash key, nor is a hash underneath at all.
Sign¶
The sign is either '+', '', 'NaN', '+inf' or 'inf'. You can access it with the sign() method.
A sign of 'NaN' is used to represent the result when input arguments are not numbers or as a result of 0/0. '+inf' and 'inf' represent plus respectively minus infinity. You will get '+inf' when dividing a positive number by 0, and 'inf' when dividing any negative number by 0.
Method calls¶
Since all numbers are now objects, you can use all functions that are part of the BigInt API. You can only use the bxxx() notation, and not the fxxx() notation, though.
But a warning is in order. When using the following to make a copy of a number, only a shallow copy will be made.
$x = 9; $y = $x; $x = $y = 7;
Using the copy or the original with overloaded math is okay, e.g. the following work:
$x = 9; $y = $x; print $x + 1, " ", $y,"\n"; # prints 10 9
but calling any method that modifies the number directly will result in both the original and the copy being destroyed:
$x = 9; $y = $x; print $x>badd(1), " ", $y,"\n"; # prints 10 10 $x = 9; $y = $x; print $x>binc(1), " ", $y,"\n"; # prints 10 10 $x = 9; $y = $x; print $x>bmul(2), " ", $y,"\n"; # prints 18 18
Using methods that do not modify, but test that the contents works:
$x = 9; $y = $x; $z = 9 if $x>is_zero(); # works fine
See the documentation about the copy constructor and "=" in overload, as well as the documentation in BigInt for further details.
Methods¶
 inf()
 A shortcut to return Math::BigInt>binf(). Useful because Perl does not always handle bareword "inf" properly.
 NaN()
 A shortcut to return Math::BigInt>bnan(). Useful because Perl does not always handle bareword "NaN" properly.
 e

# perl Mbigint=e wle 'print e'
Returns Euler's number "e", aka exp(1). Note that under bigint, this is truncated to an integer, and hence simple '2'.
 PI

# perl Mbigint=PI wle 'print PI'
Returns PI. Note that under bigint, this is truncated to an integer, and hence simple '3'.
 bexp()

bexp($power,$accuracy);
Returns Euler's number "e" raised to the appropriate power, to the wanted accuracy.
Note that under bigint, the result is truncated to an integer.
Example:
# perl Mbigint=bexp wle 'print bexp(1,80)'
 bpi()

bpi($accuracy);
Returns PI to the wanted accuracy. Note that under bigint, this is truncated to an integer, and hence simple '3'.
Example:
# perl Mbigint=bpi wle 'print bpi(80)'
 upgrade()
 Return the class that numbers are upgraded to, is in fact returning $Math::BigInt::upgrade.
 in_effect()

use bigint; print "in effect\n" if bigint::in_effect; # true { no bigint; print "in effect\n" if bigint::in_effect; # false }
Returns true or false if "bigint" is in effect in the current scope.
This method only works on Perl v5.9.4 or later.
CAVEATS¶
 Operator vs literal overloading
 "bigint" works by overloading handling
of integer and floating point literals, converting them to Math::BigInt
objects.
This means that arithmetic involving only string values or string literals will be performed using Perl's builtin operators.
For example:
use bignum; my $x = "900000000000000009"; my $y = "900000000000000007"; print $x  $y;
will output 0 on default 32bit builds, since "bigint" never sees the string literals. To ensure the expression is all treated as "Math::BigInt" objects, use a literal number in the expression:
print +(0+$x)  $y;
 ranges
 Perl does not allow overloading of ranges, so you can neither safely use
ranges with bigint endpoints, nor is the iterator variable a bigint.
use 5.010; for my $i (12..13) { for my $j (20..21) { say $i ** $j; # produces a floatingpoint number, # not a big integer } }
 in_effect()
 This method only works on Perl v5.9.4 or later.
 hex()/oct()
 "bigint" overrides these routines with
versions that can also handle big integer values. Under Perl prior to
version v5.9.4, however, this will not happen unless you specifically ask
for it with the two import tags "hex" and "oct"  and
then it will be global and cannot be disabled inside a scope with "no
bigint":
use bigint qw/hex oct/; print hex("0x1234567890123456"); { no bigint; print hex("0x1234567890123456"); }
The second call to hex() will warn about a nonportable constant.
Compare this to:
use bigint; # will warn only under Perl older than v5.9.4 print hex("0x1234567890123456");
MODULES USED¶
"bigint" is just a thin wrapper around various modules of the Math::BigInt family. Think of it as the head of the family, who runs the shop, and orders the others to do the work.
The following modules are currently used by bigint:
Math::BigInt::Lite (for speed, and only if it is loadable) Math::BigInt
EXAMPLES¶
Some cool command line examples to impress the Python crowd ;) You might want to compare them to the results under Mbignum or Mbigrat:
perl Mbigint le 'print sqrt(33)' perl Mbigint le 'print 2*255' perl Mbigint le 'print 4.5+2*255' perl Mbigint le 'print 3/7 + 5/7 + 8/3' perl Mbigint le 'print 123>is_odd()' perl Mbigint le 'print log(2)' perl Mbigint le 'print 2 ** 0.5' perl Mbigint=a,65 le 'print 2 ** 0.2' perl Mbignum=a,65,l,GMP le 'print 7 ** 7777'
BUGS¶
For information about bugs and how to report them, see the BUGS section in the documentation available with the perldoc command.
perldoc bignum
SUPPORT¶
You can find documentation for this module with the perldoc command.
perldoc bigint
For more information, see the SUPPORT section in the documentation available with the perldoc command.
perldoc bignum
LICENSE¶
This program is free software; you may redistribute it and/or modify it under the same terms as Perl itself.
SEE ALSO¶
bignum and bigrat.
Math::BigInt, Math::BigFloat, Math::BigRat and Math::Big as well as Math::BigInt::FastCalc, Math::BigInt::Pari and Math::BigInt::GMP.
AUTHORS¶
 (C) by Tels <http://bloodgate.com/> in early 2002  2007.
 Maintained by Peter John Acklam <pjacklam@gmail.com<gt>, 2014.
20220704  perl v5.34.0 