curs_trace.3x man page

trace, _tracef, _traceattr, _traceattr2, _tracecchar_t, _tracecchar_t2, _tracechar, _tracechtype, _tracechtype2, _nc_tracebits, _tracedump, _tracemousecurses debugging routines

Synopsis

#include <curses.h>

void trace(const unsigned int param);

void _tracef(const char *format, ...);

char *_traceattr(attr_t attr);
char *_traceattr2(int buffer, chtype ch);
char *_tracecchar_t(const cchar_t *string);
char *_tracecchar_t2(int buffer, const cchar_t *string);
char *_tracechar(int ch);
char *_tracechtype(chtype ch);
char *_tracechtype2(int buffer, chtype ch);

void _tracedump(const char *label, WINDOW *win);
char *_nc_tracebits(void);
char *_tracemouse(const MEVENT *event);

Description

The trace routines are used for debugging the ncurses libraries, as well as applications which use the ncurses libraries. These functions are normally available only with the debugging library e.g., libncurses_g.a, but may be compiled into any model (shared, static, profile) by defining the symbol TRACE. Additionally, some functions are only available with the wide-character configuration of the libraries.

Functions

The principal parts of this interface are

  • trace, which selectively enables different tracing features, and
  • _tracef, which writes formatted data to the trace file.

Calling trace with a nonzero parameter creates the file trace in the current directory for output. If the file already exists, no tracing is done.

The other functions either return a pointer to a string-area (allocated by the corresponding function), or return no value (such as _tracedump, which implements the screen dump for TRACE_UPDATE). The caller should not free these strings, since the allocation is reused on successive calls. To work around the problem of a single string-area per function, some use a buffer-number parameter, telling the library to allocate additional string-areas.

Trace Parameter

The trace parameter is formed by OR'ing values from the list of TRACE_xxx definitions in <curses.h>. These include:

TRACE_DISABLE

turn off tracing by passing a zero parameter.

The library flushes the output file, but retains an open file-descriptor to the trace file so that it can resume tracing later if a nonzero parameter is passed to the trace function.

TRACE_TIMES

trace user and system times of updates.

TRACE_TPUTS

trace tputs(3X) calls.

TRACE_UPDATE

trace update actions, old & new screens.

TRACE_MOVE

trace cursor movement and scrolling.

TRACE_CHARPUT

trace all character outputs.

TRACE_ORDINARY

trace all update actions. The old and new screen contents are written to the trace file for each refresh.

TRACE_CALLS

trace all curses calls. The parameters for each call are traced, as well as return values.

TRACE_VIRTPUT

trace virtual character puts, i.e., calls to addch.

TRACE_IEVENT

trace low-level input processing, including timeouts.

TRACE_BITS

trace state of TTY control bits.

TRACE_ICALLS

trace internal/nested calls.

TRACE_CCALLS

trace per-character calls.

TRACE_DATABASE

trace read/write of terminfo/termcap data.

TRACE_ATTRS

trace changes to video attributes and colors.

TRACE_MAXIMUM

maximum trace level, enables all of the separate trace features.

Some tracing features are enabled whenever the trace parameter is nonzero. Some features overlap. The specific names are used as a guideline.

Initialization

These functions check the NCURSES_TRACE environment variable, to set the tracing feature as if trace was called:

filter, initscr, new_prescr, newterm, nofilter, restartterm, ripoffline, setupterm, slk_init, tgetent, use_env, use_extended_names, use_tioctl

Command-line Utilities

The command-line utilities such as tic(1) provide a verbose option which extends the set of messages written using the trace function. Both of these (-v and trace) use the same variable (_nc_tracing), which determines the messages which are written.

Because the command-line utilities may call initialization functions such as setupterm, tgetent or use_extended_names, some of their debugging output may be directed to the trace file if the NCURSES_TRACE environment variable is set:

  • messages produced in the utility are written to the standard error.
  • messages produced by the underlying library are written to trace.

If ncurses is built without tracing, none of the latter are produced, and fewer diagnostics are provided by the command-line utilities.

Return Value

Routines which return a value are designed to be used as parameters to the _tracef routine.

Portability

These functions are not part of the XSI interface. Some other curses implementations are known to have similar, undocumented features, but they are not compatible with ncurses.

A few functions are not provided when symbol versioning is used:

_nc_tracebits, _tracedump, _tracemouse

See Also

curses(3X).