TIFF and LibTiff Mail List Archive

2009.11.27 05:41 "[Tiff] v4.0 API feedback", by Adam Goode


One thing I would really like to see in libtiff is a fully-reentrant API. Currently, libtiff cannot be used independently from 2 different callers in the same memory space. This is primarily in the error and warning handlers, as well as codec registration.

I would like to start working on new APIs that take additional parameters for currently static structs. I have not looked into it fully, but this can be done without breaking compatibility by doing something like this:

  1. Introduce TIFFGetBuiltinCODECs(), which returns a copy of all the built-in codecs. This list can be altered by the user, without affecting anything else (it is a private copy). This is how new codecs would be registered.
  2. Introduce TIFFOpen2, that takes a codec list as well as warning and error callback functions. Rework the code of TIFFOpen to implement this.
  3. Change TIFFOpen to just be a tiny function that calls TIFFOpen2 with the old static codec list and error functions. Now things calling the old TIFFOpen will work as expected, but new code using TIFFOpen2 can register codecs privately and not worry about changing the behavior of other callers. More importantly, this now allows different threads to use different codecs and error functions.

Any thoughts? I think this is important, and I am willing to find some time to start hacking on it.



P.S. There are a few non-API places where the library is non-reentrant, specifically when doing TIFFGetField on WHITEPOINT and a few others. This can be fixed without changing anything non-private. I am working on some patches for these too.