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Re: vprintf performance

From: Bruno Haible
Subject: Re: vprintf performance
Date: Thu, 3 Feb 2011 12:18:21 +0100
User-agent: KMail/1.9.9

Hello Pádraig,

> The reason is because xprintf pulls in the whole gnulib vasnprintf
> implementation, and then it does a huge number of reallocs.

Did a profiling reveal where in vasnprintf the speed problems are?

> The reason my vprintf from glibc-2.12.90-21.i686 is not used is because:
> $ grep gl_cv_func_printf.*no$ config.log
> gl_cv_func_printf_infinite_long_double=no
> I had a quick look at that check, and my suspicions are raised
> as it was added in 2007. Is my glibc still not up to spec?
> I extracted the test (attached) which output:
> [0.000000e+4922] is not NAN
> [0e+4922] is not NAN
> [0.000000] is not NAN
> [0.000000e+00] is not NAN
> [0] is not NAN
> [1.550000] is not NAN
> [1.550000e+00] is not NAN
> [1.55] is not NAN
> [0.000000] is not NAN
> [8.405258e-4934] is not NAN
> [8.40526e-4934] is not NAN

Yup, this means that while glibc does not classify Pseudo-Infinity,
Pseudo-Zero, Unnormalized number, Pseudo-Denormal as NaN. It even
prints them as if they were ordinary numbers. But at least is appears
to no longer segfault on them.

The issue is a question of reliability, not spec. There is no spec that
would mandate how glibc handles these numbers. That's why the glibc bug
<http://sourceware.org/bugzilla/show_bug.cgi?id=4586> is closed as

The point is that these floating-point values are outside of IEEE 754:
they are not finite, not infinite, not zero, and not "normal" NaNs.

This reliability is provided by the gnulib module 'printf-safe', which is
a dependency of 'printf-posix'. It is particularly interesting for the 'od'
program, when used as "od -t fL". You could use the gnulib-tool option
'--avoid=printf-safe' but then 'od -t fL' will likely crash on random
input on some platforms.

See these threads:

In memoriam Buddy Holly <http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buddy_Holly>

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