Is there perhaps some code around this that you are not showing to us? I tried your example on Perl 5.10.0 and it ran fine for me:
Volume in drive C has no label.
Volume Serial Number is 74E6-4409
Directory of C:\HELP\Docs\R2009\sp01
09/25/2009 09:57 AM <DIR> .
09/25/2009 09:57 AM <DIR> ..
0 File(s) 0 bytes
2 Dir(s) 224,589,967,360 bytes free
This is perl, v5.10.0 built for MSWin32-x86-multi-thread
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