clinton has asked for the wisdom of the Perl Monks concerning the following question:

Hi all

I need to implement a cron daemon which runs jobs such as sending emails, clearing caches, updating search indexes etc.

The whole daemony forky thing is foreign to me. I've spent some time looking at Proc::Daemon, Schedule::Cron, perlipc etc, but I'm a bit confused as to where to begin and what is possible/easy.

Essentially, what I want to achieve is:

Dispatcher daemon - allows modules to register with it - when a job is scheduled, calls the job and forks -- job tries to obtain a lock -- if it fails, count++ if count > max --> warn -- if lock obtained -- run job to completion -- appends messages to a log shared by all jobs -- unlock -- exit -- if receives a SIGINT -- stops all forked children -- exits
The forked process should not share data with the parent process, and each time a job starts, it should start with a fresh slate - this I assume is an 'of course' with fork, but what if there were just SOME data that I would like to be loaded only once and shared with the forked processes, is this possible?

The details I can figure out, but some pointers would be appreciated.

many thanks