[Libvir] ABI compatibility question: static strings returned from some functions

Richard W.M. Jones rjones at redhat.com
Mon Feb 19 14:44:36 UTC 2007

We have some functions such as virConnectGetType which are defined to 
return statically allocated strings:

  * virConnectGetType:
  * @conn: pointer to the hypervisor connection
  * Get the name of the Hypervisor software used.
  * Returns NULL in case of error, a static zero terminated string 
const char *
virConnectGetType(virConnectPtr conn)

This is all well and good in the typical local case, but when working 
over a remote connection the string we return is allocated and requires 
freeing at some point.  Unfortunately I don't see a good thing to do in 
this case except to change the semantics of virConnectGetType, which 
arguably breaks ABI compatibility.

Suggestions from anyone?



Emerging Technologies, Red Hat  http://et.redhat.com/~rjones/
64 Baker Street, London, W1U 7DF     Mobile: +44 7866 314 421
  "[Negative numbers] darken the very whole doctrines of the equations
  and make dark of the things which are in their nature excessively
  obvious and simple" (Francis Maseres FRS, mathematician, 1759)
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