Kryptomatrix Kryptomatrix - 1 month ago 7
C Question

Terminating a program with calling atexit functions (Linux)

Is there any way to send a signal to a process (in Linux), that results in a termination of the process after going through the "atexit-functions" (in this case:

void shutdownEngines()
)? Using "pkill name" does not work.

#include <cstdlib>
void shutdownEngines() {/*is not executed by "pkill name"*/}
int main() {
atexit(shutdownEngines);
while(true)
doStuff();
}


Usage: I'm currently programming a robot. Every time I want to test it, I'll start the program and terminate it with "
pkill name
", but "
shutdownEngines
" isn't called and the robot keeps moving, falling off the table etc.

I know I could do "
pkill name; ./shutdownEngines.sh
", but this would be very bad style in my case (the numbers of the gpio pins connected to the engines are defined in a header file of the main program (the source code of the main program is not on the robot but on my computer). Making sure that there's always a "
shutdownEngines.sh
" program/script with the right pins on every robot would be very complicated.

Answer

from the man page of atexit:

Functions registered using atexit() (and on_exit(3)) are not called if a process terminates abnormally because of the delivery of a signal.

atexit is called when your main routine returns or when you call exit, not on a signal.

When you call pkill you're sending a SIGTERM signal. Handle this signal with signal or sigaction instead (define handlers on SIGTERM, SIGINT, SIGFPE, ...) to stop the engines before exiting your program.

Example lifted from GNU C library documentation:

void
termination_handler (int signum)
{
  struct temp_file *p;

  for (p = temp_file_list; p; p = p->next)
    unlink (p->name);  // don't delete files, stop your engines instead :)
}

int
main (void)
{
  …
  struct sigaction new_action, old_action;

  /* Set up the structure to specify the new action. */
  new_action.sa_handler = termination_handler;
  sigemptyset (&new_action.sa_mask);
  new_action.sa_flags = 0;

  sigaction (SIGINT, NULL, &old_action);
  if (old_action.sa_handler != SIG_IGN)
    sigaction (SIGINT, &new_action, NULL);
  sigaction (SIGHUP, NULL, &old_action);
  if (old_action.sa_handler != SIG_IGN)
    sigaction (SIGHUP, &new_action, NULL);
  sigaction (SIGTERM, NULL, &old_action);
  if (old_action.sa_handler != SIG_IGN)
    sigaction (SIGTERM, &new_action, NULL);
  …
}

(of course, no handler can handle the SIGKILL "signal", which tells the OS to remove your process from the active process list, without further notice!)

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