[Rd] Interrupting C++ code execution

From: <schattenpflanze_at_arcor.de>
Date: Mon, 25 Apr 2011 11:22:15 +0200


Hello,

I am writing an R interface for one of my C++ programs. The computations in C++ are very time consuming (several hours), so the user needs to be able to interrupt them. Currently, the only way I found to do so is calling R_CheckUserInterrupt() frequently. Unfortunately, there are several problems with that:

  1. Calling R_CheckUserInterrupt() interrupts immediately, so I have no possibility to exit my code gracefully. In particular, I suppose that objects created on the heap (e.g., STL containers) are not destructed properly.
  2. Calling R_CheckUserInterrupt() within a parallel OpenMP loop causes memory corruptions. Even if I do so within a critical section, it usually results in segfaults, crashes, or invalid variable contents afterwards. I suppose this is due to the threads not being destroyed properly. Since most of the time critical computations are done in parallel, this means I can hardly interrupt anything.

Having a function similar to R_CheckUserInterrupt() but returning a boolean variable (has an interrupt occurred or not?) would solve these problems. Is there a way to find out about user interrupt requests (the user pressing ctrl+c or maybe a different set of keys) without interrupting immediately?

I would appreciate your advice on this topic.

Best regards,
Peter



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