[PATCH] prevent retries on fclose/fflush after write errors

Laurent Bercot ska-dietlibc at skarnet.org
Tue Mar 13 22:15:32 UTC 2012

>>> alarm(1);
>>> fgets(buf, sizeof buf, f);
> I was assuming the old standard idiom of installing a do-nothing
> signal handler (without SA_RESTART) for SIGALRM so that fgets would
> return with an error and the program could proceed.

 Ugh. I get it. In this case, then, *of course* you want to get EINTR
reported to the user. And I already agreed that the libc should not
safe-wrap system calls, so yes, naturally fgets should be interrupted.

 But honestly, this seems to me like the lazy (in a bad sense) way to
write such a program; the right way would be to write a little
asynchronous select/poll loop with a timeout of 1 second and a reading
event on fd 0. The main reason why the latter paradigm isn't used as
much is that stdio doesn't handle partial reads and so is quite unusable
in asynchronous loops - in other words, stdio sucks.

 Whenever I need to listen to signals as events (or, in the case of
alarm(), as timeouts), I use a self-pipe and a select loop so I can
listen to any number of events at the same time. It's a bit harder to
program, but much more robust; the "blocking system calls + EINTR"
paradigm is ad-hoc and error-prone. It can break so easily, for instance
when your libc is misguided and safewraps around EINTR. ;)


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