Re: stream bytes

Christopher <>
Tue, 6 Dec 2011 08:47:18 -0800 (PST)
Ok, maybe I should reword things.

Someone, sometime, made an erroneous buffer class. The intention the
author had was to store UTF-8 encoded text and that text was expected
to be XML. Instead, the author decided that all he had to do was
reinterpret_cast<const char *> whatever parameter came in to be

        template <typename T, size_t L>
        StringBufferList & operator << (const T (& value)[L])
            append(reinterpret_cast<const char *>(&value), (L - 1) *
            return *this;

Then when extracting he reinterpet_cast<const wchar_t *>
The author obviously had no idea what he was doing.

Later down the road, someone must have inserted something besides
UTF-8 encoded text. My goal is to identify where that is occuring. My
thought was to examine the contents of the buffer and see what parts
are able to be converted to UTF-8 encoded text, look at it, and see if
it is something recognizable, so as to give me a clue where the bad
insertions are occuring.

It isn't as easy as just setting a breakpoint and looking at the call
stack, because there is not much of a call stack, since the author
also decided to use boost::bind to trigger this via callbacks.

In order to examine the contents, since there is no telling what they
are, I thought I should dump it out to a file as a textual
representation of the bytes.

So my questions are
How do I dump the contents out as a textual representation of the
bytes? Would the code below do the trick?

std::wstring StringBufferList::GetBytesAsText() const
    // This class should have been storing bytes as unsigned char
rather than char
    // to begin with and needs to be changed later.
    // I am just adding this method quickly for debugging purposes.
    // Because of the lack of type safety currently in insertion of
any type using a reinterpret_cast
    // this class made use of, we must check each byte for validity.

    std::wstringstream output;
    size_t numBytes = getSize();

    for( const_iterator itBuffer = begin(); itBuffer != end(); itBuffer
++ )
        for( size_t byteIndex = 0; byteIndex < numBytes; ++byteIndex )
            int & byte = static_cast<int>(itBuffer->buffer-


            output << std::hex << std::setw(2) << std::setfill(L'0')
<< byte;
            output << "' '";

    return output.str();

I cannot simply examine things in the debugger, because
1) The enitre contents aren't valid text in any encoding, due to the
author's bug
2) The contents are split up amongst several data structures in a link

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