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Re: another mysterious segfault

From: Frank Smith
Subject: Re: another mysterious segfault
Date: Mon, 29 Aug 2005 19:02:22 -0500

--On Monday, August 29, 2005 16:20:15 -0700 Lars Damerow <address@hidden> wrote:

> I have a very naive question--is there any reason aside from speed that
> cfengine is written in C? The sysadmin in me can't help but think that a
> scripting language would have better error reporting than
> "Segmentation fault." ;)

As a former C programmer, in my opinion there is no reason for a well-written
C program to segfault other than HW failures.  In cfengine's case, I would
hope that the likely culprit is linking in and calling library functions
whose actual parameters and return values are different from the way they
are defined in the header files it was compiled against, usually due to a
version mismatch between the headers available at compile time and the actual
libraries linked in at runtime. If this is your problem you might consider
building cfengine statically for your kickstart install.
  The other option is that someone made some (bad) coding assumptions that
all data passed to it would be of the correct type and value range, that all
function calls would return successfully, and that any decision tree accounts
for all possible cases, and thus skipped adding all the necessary error-
checking code to exit cleanly with a meaningful error message under any
of those situations.  If cfengine is in this category then it needs fixing.


> cheers,
> lars
> --
> lars damerow
> button pusher
> pixar animation studios
> address@hidden
> Share and Enjoy!
> _______________________________________________
> Help-cfengine mailing list
> address@hidden

Frank Smith                                      address@hidden
Sr. Systems Administrator                       Voice: 512-374-4673
Hoover's Online                                   Fax: 512-374-4501

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