Friday, April 23, 2010

Easier cython/python/c debugging with new GDB

We all know how debugging is an dreaded integral part of every programmer's work. It can also be fun sometimes depending on the time to deadline, complexity of the bug and time already spent.
So if anyone is still left who does assignments or other programs without debugging (using print statements etc) then please consider learning it. Else you are simply increasing your work and frustration.
For debugging in any programming language my advise would be to use the eclipse debugger gui which provides all the standard features present in any debugger and integration with java, c/c++, python and a host of other languages.

This post was not about plain debugging. Its about the new features in GDB 7 (the GNU debugger) which enables writing pretty printers in python. More information can be had from the net. However it means a much easier debugging experience with cython. The good folks at Fedora have written some cool scripts to integration python scripting capability of gdb to enable easier cython debugging.
Check out the awesomeness at
In short now you can do the following easily with the new gdb

  • automatically display python frame information in PyEval_EvalFrameEx in gdb backtraces, including in ABRT:
    • python source file, line number, and function names
    • values of locals, if available
  • name of function for wrapped C functions
 This gonna make my life easier, especially since my DD project is in cyton/python.

Also not to forget the uber cool features it could enable not only for python developers but for all. As an example check out the blog at

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