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[PATCH v2] strbuf doc: reuse after strbuf_release is fine




strbuf_release leaves the strbuf in a valid, initialized state, so
there is no need to call strbuf_init after it.

Moreover, this is not likely to change in the future: strbuf_release
leaving the strbuf in a valid state has been easy to maintain and has
been very helpful for Git's robustness and simplicity (e.g.,
preventing use-after-free vulnerabilities).

Document the semantics so the next generation of Git developers can
become familiar with them without reading the implementation.  It is
still not advisable to call strbuf_release too often because it is
wasteful, so add a note pointing to strbuf_reset for that.

The same semantics apply to strbuf_detach.  Add a similar note to its
docstring to make that clear.

Improved-by: Jeff King <peff@xxxxxxxx>
Signed-off-by: Jonathan Nieder <jrnieder@xxxxxxxxx>
---
Jeff King wrote:

> I think it's actually OK to use the string buffer after this function.
> It's just an empty string.
>
> Perhaps we should be more explicit: this releases any resources and
> resets to a pristine, empty state. I suspect strbuf_detach() probably
> should make the same claim.

Like this?

Thanks,
Jonathan

 strbuf.h | 11 +++++++++--
 1 file changed, 9 insertions(+), 2 deletions(-)

diff --git a/strbuf.h b/strbuf.h
index 7496cb8ec5..249df86711 100644
--- a/strbuf.h
+++ b/strbuf.h
@@ -82,8 +82,12 @@ extern char strbuf_slopbuf[];
 extern void strbuf_init(struct strbuf *, size_t);
 
 /**
- * Release a string buffer and the memory it used. You should not use the
- * string buffer after using this function, unless you initialize it again.
+ * Release a string buffer and the memory it used. After this call, the
+ * strbuf points to an empty string that does not need to be free()ed, as
+ * if it had been set to `STRBUF_INIT` and never modified.
+ *
+ * To clear a strbuf in preparation for further use without the overhead
+ * of free()ing and malloc()ing again, use strbuf_reset() instead.
  */
 extern void strbuf_release(struct strbuf *);
 
@@ -91,6 +95,9 @@ extern void strbuf_release(struct strbuf *);
  * Detach the string from the strbuf and returns it; you now own the
  * storage the string occupies and it is your responsibility from then on
  * to release it with `free(3)` when you are done with it.
+ *
+ * The strbuf that previously held the string is reset to `STRBUF_INIT` so
+ * it can be reused after calling this function.
  */
 extern char *strbuf_detach(struct strbuf *, size_t *);
 
-- 
2.14.2.920.gcf0c67979c