Source

pycparser / README.html

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<div class="document" id="pycparser-v2-04">
<h1 class="title">pycparser v2.04</h1>
<table class="docinfo" frame="void" rules="none">
<col class="docinfo-name" />
<col class="docinfo-content" />
<tbody valign="top">
<tr><th class="docinfo-name">Author:</th>
<td><a class="first reference external" href="http://eli.thegreenplace.net">Eli Bendersky</a></td></tr>
</tbody>
</table>
<div class="contents topic" id="contents">
<p class="topic-title first">Contents</p>
<ul class="auto-toc simple">
<li><a class="reference internal" href="#introduction" id="id2">1&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Introduction</a><ul class="auto-toc">
<li><a class="reference internal" href="#what-is-pycparser" id="id3">1.1&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;What is pycparser?</a></li>
<li><a class="reference internal" href="#what-is-it-good-for" id="id4">1.2&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;What is it good for?</a></li>
<li><a class="reference internal" href="#which-version-of-c-does-pycparser-support" id="id5">1.3&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Which version of C does pycparser support?</a></li>
<li><a class="reference internal" href="#what-grammar-does-pycparser-follow" id="id6">1.4&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;What grammar does pycparser follow?</a></li>
<li><a class="reference internal" href="#how-is-pycparser-licensed" id="id7">1.5&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;How is pycparser licensed?</a></li>
<li><a class="reference internal" href="#contact-details" id="id8">1.6&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Contact details</a></li>
</ul>
</li>
<li><a class="reference internal" href="#installing" id="id9">2&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Installing</a><ul class="auto-toc">
<li><a class="reference internal" href="#prerequisites" id="id10">2.1&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Prerequisites</a></li>
<li><a class="reference internal" href="#installation-process" id="id11">2.2&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Installation process</a></li>
<li><a class="reference internal" href="#known-problems" id="id12">2.3&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Known problems</a></li>
</ul>
</li>
<li><a class="reference internal" href="#using" id="id13">3&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Using</a><ul class="auto-toc">
<li><a class="reference internal" href="#interaction-with-the-c-preprocessor" id="id14">3.1&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Interaction with the C preprocessor</a></li>
<li><a class="reference internal" href="#what-about-the-standard-c-library-headers" id="id15">3.2&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;What about the standard C library headers?</a></li>
<li><a class="reference internal" href="#basic-usage" id="id16">3.3&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Basic usage</a></li>
<li><a class="reference internal" href="#advanced-usage" id="id17">3.4&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Advanced usage</a></li>
</ul>
</li>
<li><a class="reference internal" href="#modifying" id="id18">4&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Modifying</a></li>
<li><a class="reference internal" href="#package-contents" id="id19">5&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Package contents</a></li>
<li><a class="reference internal" href="#contributors" id="id20">6&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Contributors</a></li>
<li><a class="reference internal" href="#changelog" id="id21">7&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Changelog</a></li>
</ul>
</div>
<div class="section" id="introduction">
<h1>1&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Introduction</h1>
<div class="section" id="what-is-pycparser">
<h2>1.1&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;What is pycparser?</h2>
<p><tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt> is a parser for the C language, written in pure Python. It is a module designed to be easily integrated into applications that need to parse C source code.</p>
</div>
<div class="section" id="what-is-it-good-for">
<h2>1.2&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;What is it good for?</h2>
<p>Anything that needs C code to be parsed. The following are some uses for <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt>, taken from real user reports:</p>
<ul class="simple">
<li>C code obfuscator</li>
<li>Front-end for various specialized C compilers</li>
<li>Static code checker</li>
<li>Automatic unit-test discovery</li>
<li>Adding specialized extensions to the C language</li>
</ul>
<p><tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt> is unique in the sense that it's written in pure Python - a very high level language that's easy to experiment with and tweak. To people familiar with Lex and Yacc, <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt>'s code will be simple to understand.</p>
</div>
<div class="section" id="which-version-of-c-does-pycparser-support">
<h2>1.3&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Which version of C does pycparser support?</h2>
<p><tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt> aims to support the full C99 language (according to the standard ISO/IEC 9899). This is a new feature in the version 2.x series - earlier versions only supported C89. For more information on the change, read <a class="reference external" href="http://code.google.com/p/pycparser/wiki/C99support">this wiki page</a>.</p>
<p><tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt> doesn't support any GCC extensions.</p>
</div>
<div class="section" id="what-grammar-does-pycparser-follow">
<h2>1.4&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;What grammar does pycparser follow?</h2>
<p><tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt> very closely follows the C grammar provided in the end of the C99 standard document</p>
</div>
<div class="section" id="how-is-pycparser-licensed">
<h2>1.5&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;How is pycparser licensed?</h2>
<p><a class="reference external" href="http://www.opensource.org/licenses/bsd-license.php">New BSD License</a></p>
</div>
<div class="section" id="contact-details">
<h2>1.6&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Contact details</h2>
<p>Drop me an email to <a class="reference external" href="mailto:eliben&#64;gmail.com">eliben&#64;gmail.com</a> for any questions regarding <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt>. For reporting problems with <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt> or submitting feature requests, the best way is to open an issue on the <a class="reference external" href="http://code.google.com/p/pycparser/">pycparser page at Google Code</a>.</p>
</div>
</div>
<div class="section" id="installing">
<h1>2&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Installing</h1>
<div class="section" id="prerequisites">
<h2>2.1&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Prerequisites</h2>
<ul class="simple">
<li><tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt> was tested on Python 2.6 and 3.2, on both Linux and Windows. It should work on any later version (in both the 2.x and 3.x lines) as well.</li>
<li><tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt> uses the PLY module for the actual lexer and parser construction. Install PLY from <a class="reference external" href="http://www.dabeaz.com/ply/">its website</a>.</li>
</ul>
</div>
<div class="section" id="installation-process">
<h2>2.2&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Installation process</h2>
<p>Installing <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt> is very simple. Once you download it from its <a class="reference external" href="http://code.google.com/p/pycparser/">website</a> and unzip the package, you just have to execute the standard <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">python</span> <span class="pre">setup.py</span> <span class="pre">install</span></tt>. The setup script will then place the <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt> module into <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">site-packages</span></tt> in your Python's installation library.</p>
<p>It's recommended to run <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">_build_tables.py</span></tt> in the <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt> code directory after installation to make sure the parsing tables of PLY are pre-generated. This can make your code run faster.</p>
</div>
<div class="section" id="known-problems">
<h2>2.3&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Known problems</h2>
<ul class="simple">
<li>Some users who've installed a new version of <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt> over an existing version ran into a problem using the newly installed library. This has to do with parse tables staying around as <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">.pyc</span></tt> files from the older version. If you see unexplained errors from <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt> after an upgrade, remove it (by deleting the <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt> directory in your Python's <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">site-packages</span></tt>, or wherever you installed it) and install again.</li>
</ul>
</div>
</div>
<div class="section" id="using">
<h1>3&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Using</h1>
<div class="section" id="interaction-with-the-c-preprocessor">
<h2>3.1&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Interaction with the C preprocessor</h2>
<p>In order to be compilable, C code must be preprocessed by the C preprocessor - <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">cpp</span></tt>. <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">cpp</span></tt> handles preprocessing directives like <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">#include</span></tt> and <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">#define</span></tt>, removes comments, and does other minor tasks that prepare the C code for compilation.</p>
<p>For all but the most trivial snippets of C code, <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt>, like a C compiler, must receive preprocessed C code in order to function correctly. If you import the top-level <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">parse_file</span></tt> function from the <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt> package, it will interact with <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">cpp</span></tt> for you, as long as it's in your PATH, or you provide a path to it.</p>
<p>On the vast majority of Linux systems, <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">cpp</span></tt> is installed and is in the PATH. If you're on Windows and don't have <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">cpp</span></tt> somewhere, you can use the one provided in the <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">utils</span></tt> directory in <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt>'s distribution. This <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">cpp</span></tt> executable was compiled from the <a class="reference external" href="http://www.cs.princeton.edu/software/lcc/">LCC distribution</a>, and is provided under LCC's license terms.</p>
</div>
<div class="section" id="what-about-the-standard-c-library-headers">
<h2>3.2&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;What about the standard C library headers?</h2>
<p>C code almost always includes various header files from the standard C library, like <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">stdio.h</span></tt>. While, with some effort, <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt> can be made to parse the standard headers from any C compiler, it's much simpler to use the provided &quot;fake&quot; standard  includes in <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">utils/fake_libc_include</span></tt>. These are standard C header files that contain only the bare necessities to allow valid parsing of the files that use them. As a bonus, since they're minimal, it can significantly improve the performance of parsing C files.</p>
<p>See the <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">using_cpp_libc.py</span></tt> example for more details.</p>
</div>
<div class="section" id="basic-usage">
<h2>3.3&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Basic usage</h2>
<p>Take a look at the <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">examples</span></tt> directory of the distribution for a few examples of using <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt>. These should be enough to get you started.</p>
</div>
<div class="section" id="advanced-usage">
<h2>3.4&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Advanced usage</h2>
<p>The public interface of <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt> is well documented with comments in <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser/c_parser.py</span></tt>. For a detailed overview of the various AST nodes created by the parser, see <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser/_c_ast.cfg</span></tt>.</p>
<p>There's also a <a class="reference external" href="http://code.google.com/p/pycparser/wiki/FAQ">FAQ available here</a>. In any case, you can always drop me an <a class="reference external" href="mailto:eliben&#64;gmail.com">email</a> for help.</p>
</div>
</div>
<div class="section" id="modifying">
<h1>4&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Modifying</h1>
<p>There are a few points to keep in mind when modifying <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt>:</p>
<ul class="simple">
<li>The code for <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt>'s AST nodes is automatically generated from a configuration file - <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">_c_ast.cfg</span></tt>, by <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">_ast_gen.py</span></tt>. If you modify the AST configuration, make sure to re-generate the code.</li>
<li>Make sure you understand the optimized mode of <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt> - for that you must read the docstring in the constructor of the <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">CParser</span></tt> class. For development you should create the parser without optimizations, so that it will regenerate the Yacc and Lex tables when you change the grammar.</li>
</ul>
</div>
<div class="section" id="package-contents">
<h1>5&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Package contents</h1>
<p>Once you unzip the <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt> package, you'll see the following files and directories:</p>
<dl class="docutils">
<dt>README.txt/html:</dt>
<dd>This README file.</dd>
<dt>setup.py:</dt>
<dd>Installation script</dd>
<dt>examples/:</dt>
<dd>A directory with some examples of using <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt></dd>
<dt>pycparser/:</dt>
<dd>The <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt> module source code.</dd>
<dt>tests/:</dt>
<dd>Unit tests.</dd>
<dt>utils/cpp.exe:</dt>
<dd>A Windows executable of the C pre-processor suitable for working with pycparser</dd>
<dt>utils/fake_libc_include:</dt>
<dd>Minimal standard C library include files that should allow to parse any C code.</dd>
<dt>utils/internal/:</dt>
<dd>Internal utilities for my own use. You probably don't need them.</dd>
</dl>
</div>
<div class="section" id="contributors">
<h1>6&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Contributors</h1>
<p>Some people have contributed to <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt> by opening issues on bugs they've found and/or submitting patches. The list of contributors is at <a class="reference external" href="http://code.google.com/p/pycparser/wiki/Contributors">this pycparser Wiki page</a>.</p>
</div>
<div class="section" id="changelog">
<h1>7&nbsp;&nbsp;&nbsp;Changelog</h1>
<ul class="simple">
<li>Version 2.04 (21.05.2011)<ul>
<li>License changed from LGPL to BSD</li>
<li>Bug fixes:<ul>
<li>Issue 31: constraining the scope of typedef definitions</li>
<li>Issues 33, 35: fixes for the c-to-c.py example</li>
</ul>
</li>
<li>Added C99 integer types to fake headers</li>
<li>Added unit tests for the c-to-c.py example</li>
</ul>
</li>
<li>Version 2.03 (06.03.2011)<ul>
<li>Bug fixes:<ul>
<li>Issue 17: empty file-level declarations</li>
<li>Issue 18: empty statements and declarations in functions</li>
<li>Issue 19: anonymous structs &amp; union fields</li>
<li>Issue 23: fix coordinates of Cast nodes</li>
</ul>
</li>
<li>New example added (<tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">examples/c-to-c.py</span></tt>) for translating ASTs generated by <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt> back into C code.</li>
<li><tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt> is now on PyPI (Python Package Index)</li>
<li>Created <a class="reference external" href="http://code.google.com/p/pycparser/wiki/FAQ">FAQ</a> on the <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt> project page</li>
<li>Removed support for Python 2.5. <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt> supports Python 2 from 2.6 and on, and Python 3.</li>
</ul>
</li>
<li>Version 2.02 (10.12.2010)<ul>
<li>The name of a <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">NamedInitializer</span></tt> node was turned into a sequence of nodes
instead of an attribute, to make it discoverable by the AST node visitor.</li>
<li>Documentation updates</li>
</ul>
</li>
<li>Version 2.01 (04.12.2010)<ul>
<li>Removed dependency on YAML. Parsing of the AST node configuration file is done with a simple parser.</li>
<li>Fixed issue 12: installation problems</li>
</ul>
</li>
<li>Version 2.00 (31.10.2010)<ul>
<li>Support for C99 (read <a class="reference external" href="http://code.google.com/p/pycparser/wiki/C99support">this wiki page</a> for more information).</li>
</ul>
</li>
<li>Version 1.08 (09.10.2010)<ul>
<li>Bug fixes:<ul>
<li>Correct handling of <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">do{}</span> <span class="pre">...</span> <span class="pre">while</span></tt> statements in some cases</li>
<li>Issues 6 &amp; 7: Concatenation of string literals</li>
<li>Issue 9: Support for unnamed bitfields in structs</li>
</ul>
</li>
</ul>
</li>
<li>Version 1.07 (18.05.2010)<ul>
<li>Python 3.1 compatibility: <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">pycparser</span></tt> was modified to run on Python 3.1 as well as 2.6</li>
</ul>
</li>
<li>Version 1.06 (10.04.2010)<ul>
<li>Bug fixes:<ul>
<li>coord not propagated to FuncCall nodes</li>
<li>lexing of the ^= token (XOREQUALS)</li>
<li>parsing failed on some abstract declarator rules</li>
</ul>
</li>
<li>Linux compatibility: fixed end-of-line and <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">cpp</span></tt> path issues to allow all tests and examples run on Linux</li>
</ul>
</li>
<li>Version 1.05 (16.10.2009)<ul>
<li>Fixed the <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">parse_file</span></tt> auxiliary function to handle multiple arguments to <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">cpp</span></tt> correctly</li>
</ul>
</li>
<li>Version 1.04 (22.05.2009)<ul>
<li>Added the <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">fake_libc_include</span></tt> directory to allow parsing of C code that uses standard C library include files without dependency on a real C library.</li>
<li>Tested with Python 2.6 and PLY 3.2</li>
</ul>
</li>
<li>Version 1.03 (31.01.2009)<ul>
<li>Accept enumeration lists with a comma after the last item (C99 feature).</li>
</ul>
</li>
<li>Version 1.02 (16.01.2009)<ul>
<li>Fixed problem of parsing struct/enum/union names that were named similarly to previously defined <tt class="docutils literal"><span class="pre">typedef</span></tt> types.</li>
</ul>
</li>
<li>Version 1.01 (09.01.2009)<ul>
<li>Fixed subprocess invocation in the helper function parse_file - now it's more portable</li>
</ul>
</li>
<li>Version 1.0 (15.11.2008)<ul>
<li>Initial release</li>
<li>Support for ANSI C89</li>
</ul>
</li>
</ul>
</div>
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