Dave Hudson


c8: Finishing the memory changes

2017-04-20 00:00 - 1 min read

Yesterday’s changes prepared for replacing the “naked” memory management operations new and delete, and today they were actually removed. Aside from being better stylistically, the change actually makes it much easier to build the code so that it is always correct. std::unique_ptr<> requires that data be moved, rather than copied, whereas this required more careful analysis to do this with naked pointers.

Valgrind Headaches

Having made a change to the memory management code it’s always useful to run valgrind. This should have been trivial but actually turned out to be a real nuissance.

The first problem was that valgrind actually found a bug. One of the changes yesterday was faulty and had to be reverted. The much bigger problem was that valgrind ended up reporting thousands of problems related to uninitialized data, yet after looking at the code there were no instances where this was actually happening.

After some frustrating time spent on Google searches it turns out that valgrind wasn’t happy analyzing the test application because it was using static linking (as opposed to dynamic linking). I added a comment to this effect, but the app is still built statically by default because that keeps the benchmark numbers consistent.

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