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Re: obsoleting annotate level 2
- From: Elena Zannoni <ezannoni at redhat dot com>
- To: Bob Rossi <bob_rossi at cox dot net>
- Cc: gdb at sources dot redhat dot com
- Date: Tue, 4 Feb 2003 10:53:51 -0500
- Subject: Re: obsoleting annotate level 2
- References: <20030204124435.GB2565@white>
Bob Rossi writes:
> I have been writing a front end to gdb called cgdb. It depends on gdb's
> annotate level 2 feature. This project can be downloaded at
> cgdb.sourceforge.net. Before that it was hosted at tgdb.sourceforge.net.
> It is a curses front end to gdb that is intended to be lightweight and
> responsive. I originally wrote cgdb because I use gdb, sometimes for
> several hours, during the day at work. We use GNAT's version of gdb
> which seems to be behind GNU ( As far as version and features ).
Interesting, I don't know if you are aware, gdb has already a curses
interface. configure gdb with --enable-tui and invoke with --tui.
Documentation is at:
Would it make sense to unify the efforts? Even though i see you want a
completely separate UI.
> I decided to make it a curses front end because there are many times
> during the day when I ssh into a window's box using cygwin.
> At the time I started developing cgdb ( about 8 month's ago ). I began
> looking into how to interface with gdb without losing any of the
> command line power. I began looking into how other debugger's did it.
> So I soon realized that xxgdb, ddd and gvd all used annotate level 1.
> I then did a little more research and discovered
> http://www.gnu.org/manual/gdb/html_chapter/gdb_21.html#SEC203 which
> encouraged me to use annotate level 2. Since even NOW, the manual says
> nothing about annotate level 2 being deprecated, but describes how to
> use the annotations.
> I used annotate 2 to interface to gdb for several reasons:
> 1. gdb-mi is not in older versions of gdb. Including GNAT's version
> of gdb ( which we use at work ). If I wrote a front end using this
> the gdb-mi feature of gdb, I would not be able to debug programs
> with GNAT, cygwin, red-hat, suse ... out of the box distributions.
> This seems UNACCEPTABLE.
> 2. gdb-mi does not have readline support at the command line.
> This is an important feature if the GUI wants to keep gdb's
> useful command line feeling 100%.
> 3. gdb-mi did not ( at the time ) support the CLI commands.
> 4. annotate level 2 gave much more information to the GUI over
> annotate level 1. Including:
> 1. When the user is interfacing with the readline library.
> 2. When the breakpoints need to be checked (instead of every time).
> 3. The prompt can change. the debugged program can output the
> string '(gdb) ' to stdout without breaking the GUI.
> 4. I was able to allow the user to communicate with the debugged
> program, no matter how the debugged program sets the terminal.
> ex. ( cbreak, raw ...)
> I feel that cgdb should be separated from gdb for several reasons:
> 1. cgdb should support a rich variety of options including
> 1. macro support
> 2. key bindings that do not have to be Emacs style
> 3. configuration file for syntax color support ...
> 4. regular expression searching
> 5. many more options that can make cgdb easier to use.
> 2. Users should not have to recompile gdb to get curses support.
> 3. I can write cgdb knowing nothing about the internals of gdb,
> without sacrificing the risk of bugs in gdb for a GUI.
> With these things in mind, I understand that gdb must move on. With or
> without cgdb. Eventually cgdb will support gdb-mi. My only claim is that
> gdb keep supporting annotate level 2 until it is ready to remove both
> annotate level 1 and 2.
> This way when other programs like gvd, ddd and xxgdb are rewritten to
> use gdb-mi and not annotate level 1, then programs like cgdb and
> possibly others can be rewritten as well. I know these programs will use
> gdb-mi when it is stable and ready. Util then, I don't think annotate
> level 1 or 2 should be removed since there are existing front ends to gdb
> that use them.
> I believe this is fair. In fact, I am even willing to support annotate
> level 2 if necessary. I know I have no association with GNU, but I would
> be willing.
> Bob Rossi