How to Create and Managed Shared Libraries that contain C++ Templates
AIX V3, CSet++ version 2 for AIX compiler
AIX V4, CSet++ version 3 for AIX compiler
How do you create and manage C++ libraries that instantiate
The way that C++ template classes and archived or shared
libraries work together on AIX is not seemless. In order
to minimize the compile/link time, the size of libraries and
programs, and the number of duplicate symbols requires some
understanding of how the C++ templates are generated and
compiled on AIX. There are basically two ways C++ template
classes are generated - compile time and link time.
AIX refers to link time generation as automatic template
generation. Automatic template generation is typically the
best approach for most programming projects that build
intermediate libraries and then build programs that link
with these libraries.
OUTLINE OF STEPS
1. Organize source code to use automatic (link time)
2. Compile library source files with -c option.
3. Compile ./tempinc/*.C files or create dummy main.
4. Archive *.o and ./tempinc/*.o into library
5. Link main program with library.
STEP 1. Organize source code to use automatic (link time) template
The primary way that the compiler selects the template generation
method is by the way the template class source code is organized.
To use link time template class instantiation organize the template
class source code as follows.
- Place template class DECLARATIONS in a header file (.h file)
- Place template class DEFINITIONS into a .c file with the same
name (prefix) as the corresponding .h file.
- Place the .h and .c files in the same include directory.
- Only include the .h files in the source files (i.e. main program)
using the template classes. Do not include the .c files.
- If you compile and link with different steps make sure
that all the compiler options are included in the link
Step II. Compile library source files with -c option.
- cd to the directory where your source files for the
library are located.
- Compile the source files with the -c compiler option.
In addition to .o files being produced there should
be a sub-directory called tempinc that is created. The tempinc
directory should also contain one or more .C files. These
.C files normally are compiled in a prelink step and are not
compiled when using the the -c option.
STEP III. Compile ./tempinc/*.C files or create dummy main.
Compile the ./tempinc/*.C files. This can be accomplished
in one of two ways.
Compile and link a "dummy" main
program or compile ./tempinc/*.C files from the library directory
and not the ./tempinc subdirectory.
Method 1. When compiling the ./tempinc/*.C files directly
do NOT change directories into the tempinc directory but
rather include the "./tempinc/*.C" and "-o ./tempinc/*.o" in
the compile line. If the ./tempinc/*.C files are compiled from
within the ./tempinc directory as the current working directory
another ./tempinc subdirectory will be created that will have the
additional .C files in it.
Method 2. Compile and link the library source code into a dummy
main program except do not link the main function. In other words,
perform a link step but it is not important if the dummy program
is built successfully or not. The reason the link step is executed
is to compile the ./tempinc/*.C files. There is actually a prelink
step that takes place when working with template classes. Before,
the link begins if a ./tempinc directory is detected and if there are
any .C files in the tempinc directory detected those files
STEP IV. Archive *.o and ./tempinc/*.o into library
- The .o files from the library directory and the ./tempinc/.o files
must all be archived. Assuming that the code was organized
as in step I. Then all the template class functions will be in the
./tempinc/*.o files and not in the library directory.
NOTE: It is possible to have both a tempinc directory and also
have template classes in the .o files of the library directory.
The template classes will be generated in a .o file any time
the template class declarations and definitions are present in
the compilation unit (.C file in this case). This is typically
should be avoided as it will result in duplicate symbols and
unnecessarily longer compile/link times due to the extra code
present in the .o files.
Note: These .o files may also be used to created a shared module
using the /usr/lpp/xlC/bin/makeC++SharedLib.
STEP V. Link main program with library.
Link the main program with the library. There are a couple
of issues here related to automatic template generation.
If the main program uses the same template classes with the
same data types as the library does then there will be
duplicate symbol warnings for these template classes.
The reason is that compiling the main program source files
will produce another ./tempinc subdirectory where the .C
files will be created and compiled and then ./tempinc/*.o files
added to the link step. Since the symbols are in the library
and also in the ./tempinc/*.o files then duplicate symbols
warnings will be generated. However, this is probably the best
that can be achieved.
If the main program only instantiates template classes
that are already in the libraries that will be linked then the
-qnotempinc option can be specified on the compile and link commands.
This will suppress the tempinc directory from being created.
Of course, if the main program does instantiate a template class
not in the library then if the -qnotempinc option is used the
template class with the new data type will be undefined.
Closing with Customer Approval
Support Line: How to Create and Managed Shared Libraries that contain C++ Templates ITEM: BU1715L
Dated: February 1997 Category: N/A
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