How to implement DCOP communication between two applications so that
1) it works when the applications are standalone (separate processes)
2) it works when the applications are loaded as parts, embedded into kontact
3) it behaves properly when a separate process exits/crashes.
In the part
Let's say that part 'A' wants to use the interface "Foo", via DCOP.
(where Foo is usually a generic name, e.g. Calendar, Mailer, AlarmDaemon, etc.)
The services which implement this interface are associated with the service type
One of those services is application 'B', which implements "Foo" - note that
'B' should make sure that the "Foo" DCOP interface is available both when
'B' is used as standalone process and when 'B' is only loaded as a part.
(This means that if the app doesn't use its own part, then both should implement
"Foo", like kaddressbook does. Of course it's simpler if the app uses its own part :)
Here are some code snippets that must go into the part (A) that wants to use "Foo":
m_foo_stub = 0L;
kapp->dcopClient()->setNotifications( true );
connect( kapp->dcopClient(), SIGNAL( applicationRemoved( const QCString&)),
this, SLOT( unregisteredFromDCOP( const QCString& )) );
kapp->dcopClient()->setNotifications( false );
[Note that setNotifications() is implemented with a refcount, this is the
correct way to do it and it won't mess up other parts]
* bool connectToFoo() method, which uses KDCOPServiceStarter::self()->findServiceFor("DCOP/Foo").
See test part for details (plugins/test/test_part.cpp).
* unregisteredFromDCOP( const QCString& appId ) slot, which will be called when
the process implementing Foo exits. The method simply does:
if ( m_foo_stub && m_foo_stub->app() == appId )
m_foo_stub = 0;
* Now you can finally use the foo dcop interface. First you need to connect
if ( !connectToFoo() )
Then you can use m_foo_stub to call the DCOP methods.
In case of critical methods, where you want to make 100% sure that the DCOP
call was correctly done (e.g. the remote app didn't crash during the call),
you can use if ( !m_foo_stub->ok() ).
In the kontact plugin
* Don't use dcopClient() until the part is loaded
* After loading the part, you might want to create a DCOP stub to use some
of its methods (do both in a loadPart() method, e.g.).
* Implement createDCOPInterface( const QString& serviceType ), to
load the part if the serviceType is one provided by it.
See KAddressbookPlugin (plugins/kaddressbook/*) for a working example.
Don't forget to
* Define the service type, using a "Type=ServiceType" .desktop file,
See e.g. kdepim/kaddressbook/dcopaddressbook.desktop
* Add DCOP/Foo to the application's ServiceTypes list, in its .desktop file
See e.g. kdepim/kaddressbook/kaddressbook.desktop
* Make sure that X-DCOP-ServiceType and X-DCOP-ServiceName are specified too.
Designing DCOP interfaces
Porting the kroupware Q_SIGNALS/Q_SLOTS to DCOP requires some changes.
For instance any non-const reference (such as those used for returning
values to the caller) has to be changed. If there is more than one
value to be returned, you need to
* define a structure containing all the returned values
* define QDataStream << and >> operators for that structure.