environment variable

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A variable used to describe some property of a system. Such variables are accessible by programming languages which can change them, or base the execution of their programs on their value. For example the Common Gateway Interface (CGI) has a number of environment variables which can be used by Perl or servlet programmers when carrying out CGI programming. A typical example of a CGI environment variable is SERVER_SOFTWARE which describes the name and version of the server software that is processing a Web client request.

Subjects: Computing.

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