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From: Zajo (emildotchevski_at_[hidden])
Date: 2007-03-21 12:45:16

> Of course alternative solution, as Emil suggests, is not to change
> boost::serialization, but to register the classes manually (with
> manually chosen identifier string). But then we at least need a
> BIG FAT warning in the documentation regarding the use of
> BOOST_CLASS_EXPORT, and a possible pitfall: code refactoring loses
> archive compatibility.

There is another warning which is missing from the documentation: portable
code can not rely on BOOST_CLASS_EXPORT to register a class unless the user
explicitly calls a function from a compilation unit that "sees" that
particular BOOST_CLASS_EXPORT call. This is because it relies on a global
object's constructor to initiate the registration process, but a good
compiler will deadstrip all such global objects unless the user explicitly
calls a function from the compilation unit that defines them.

In other words BOOST_CLASS_EXPORT isn't automatic because a portable program
is required to (manually) call a (possibly empty) function from the
registered class' cpp file. This is contradictory to BOOST_CLASS_EXPORT's
intended use to register derived classes automatically, just by linking
their cpp files.

Emil Dotchevski

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