Obtaining the Details of a Type in Software

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Obtaining the Details of a Type
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The describe_type operation returns the details of a service type:
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struct TypeStruct {
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Identifier PropStructSeq ServiceTypeNameSeq boolean IncarnationNumber
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if_name; props; super_types; masked; incarnation;
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TypeStruct describe_type( in CosTrading::ServiceTypeName name ) raises( CosTrading::IllegalServiceType, CosTrading::UnknownServiceType );
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The name parameter indicates the name of the type whose details are to be returned The return value is a structure of type TypeStruct, which contains the details of the type: its IDL interface type, its property definitions, its list of base types, its incarnation number, and whether or not the type is masked If you call describe_type on a derived type, the returned structure does not contain the properties of the base types Instead, it contains only those properties that were specified when the derived type was created To get the full description of a type, including the properties of all the base types, you call fully_describe_type:
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TypeStruct fully_describe_type( in CosTrading::ServiceTypeName name ) raises( CosTrading::IllegalServiceType, CosTrading::UnknownServiceType );
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The fully_describe_type operation works like describe_type but returns all the properties for a type, including those inherited from base types If the derived type has made changes to the modes of inherited properties, fully_describe_type returns the modes as they apply to the derived type If the type specified by the name parameter does not have base types, fully_describe_type returns the same result as describe_type
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Masking and Unmasking Types
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The mask_type operation permits deprecation of a particular type as well as the creation of abstract base types:
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void mask_type( in CosTrading::ServiceTypeName name ) raises( CosTrading::IllegalServiceType,
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CosTrading::UnknownServiceType, AlreadyMasked
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The operation expects the name parameter to contain the name of the type to be masked Masking a type that is already masked raises the AlreadyMasked exception After a type is masked, it is no longer possible to create service offers of that type However, service offers of a type derived from a masked type can still be created These semantics allow you to create an abstract base type by masking it immediately after creation You can also use mask_type to deal with the type deletion problem mentioned on page 847 Instead of deleting a type, you can mask it to make it impossible for exporters to create new service offers of that type The hope is that eventually, all service offers using that type will be withdrawn, at which time the type can be safely deleted (but there is no easy way of knowing when that time has arrived) In addition, masking a type solves the type deletion problem only partially, because we cannot safely delete a type unless all service offers using derived types are also withdrawn We could also mask all derived types to get around this problem, but we cannot do this without examining the whole inheritance graph The type repository interfaces allow you to navigate the inheritance structure only toward the root of the inheritance tree and not toward the leaves[2]
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This is another defect that we hope will be addressed in a future version of the specification
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The inverse of mask_type is provided by the unmask_type operation:
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void unmask_type( in CosTrading::ServiceTypeName name ) raises( CosTrading::IllegalServiceType, CosTrading::UnknownServiceType, NotMasked );
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Unmasking a type that is not masked raises the NotMasked exception 1954 Using the Service Type Repository with C++ Using the type repository from C++ is a simple matter of calling operations on the ServiceTypeRepository interface However, before you can do this, you need a reference to the service type repository
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Obtaining a Service Type Repository Reference
Calling resolve_initial_references with a service name of "TradingService" returns an IOR to the service type repository The returned
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reference is of type CosTrading::Lookup (we examine the Lookup interface in detail in Section 1911) The Lookup interface supports a read-only attribute called type_repos that contains the object reference to the actual type repository This reference is of type Object and can be narrowed to CosTradingRepos:: ServiceTypeRepository Following is a code example that illustrates these steps Note that instead of calling resolve_initial_references directly, we use the resolve_init helper function we defined on page 819
// Get reference to Lookup interface CosTrading::Lookup_var lookup; lookup = resolve_init<CosTrading::Lookup>(orb, "TradingService"); // Read type_repos attribute to get IOR to type repository CORBA::Object_var obj = lookup->type_repos(); // Narrow CosTradingRepos::ServiceTypeRepository_var repos; repos = CosTradingRepos::ServiceTypeRepository::_narrow(obj); if (CORBA::is_nil(repos)) { cerr < "Not a type repository reference" < endl; throw 0; }
The reason for returning the type repository as type Object is to permit a later version of the specification to change to a type repository generated by the OMG MOF