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facilities for shared access to files

Project description

Facilities for shared access to files.

Latest release 20201228: New SharedWriteable class to manage concurrent output with a mutexed .write method and a context manager for grouping larger uses.

Function lockfile(path, ext=None, poll_interval=None, timeout=None)

A context manager which takes and holds a lock file.


  • path: the base associated with the lock file.
  • ext: the extension to the base used to construct the lock file name. Default: ".lock"
  • timeout: maximum time to wait before failing, default None (wait forever).
  • poll_interval: polling frequency when timeout is not 0.

Class SharedAppendFile

A base class to share a modifiable file between multiple users.

The use case was driven from the shared CSV files used by cs.nodedb.csvdb.Backend_CSVFile, where multiple users can read from a common CSV file, and coordinate updates with a lock file.

This presents the following interfaces:

  • __iter__: yields data chunks from the underlying file up to EOF; it blocks no more than reading from the file does. Note that multiple iterators share the same read pointer.

  • open: a context manager returning a writable file for writing updates to the file; it blocks reads from this instance (though not, of course, by other users of the file) and arranges that users of __iter__ do not receive their own written data, thus arranging that __iter__ returns only foreign file updates.

Subclasses would normally override __iter__ to parse the received data into their natural records.

Method SharedAppendFile.__init__(self, pathname, read_only=False, write_only=False, binary=False, newline=None, lock_ext=None, lock_timeout=None, poll_interval=None)

Initialise this SharedAppendFile.


  • pathname: the pathname of the file to open.
  • read_only: set to true if we will not write updates.
  • write_only: set to true if we will not read updates.
  • binary: if the file is to be opened in binary mode, otherwise text mode.
  • 'newline: passed to open()`
  • lock_ext: lock file extension.
  • lock_timeout: maxmimum time to wait for obtaining the lock file.
  • poll_interval: poll time when taking a lock file, default DEFAULT_POLL_INTERVAL

Method SharedAppendFile.__iter__(self)

Iterate over the file, yielding data chunks until EOF.

This skips data written to the file by this instance so that the data chunks returned are always foreign updates. Note that all iterators share the same file offset pointer.


for chunk in f:
    ... process chunk ...

Method SharedAppendFile.close(self)

Close the SharedAppendFile: close input queue, wait for monitor to terminate.

Property SharedAppendFile.filestate

The current FileState of the backing file.


Open the file for append write, returing a writable file. Iterators are blocked for the duration of the context manager.

Method SharedAppendFile.rewrite(self)

Context manager for rewriting the file.

This writes data to a new file which is then renamed onto the original. After the switch, the read pointer is set to the end of the new file.


with f.rewrite() as wfp:
    ... write data to wfp ...

Method SharedAppendFile.tail(self)

A generator returning data chunks from the file indefinitely.

This supports writing monitors for file updates. Note that this, like other iterators, shares the same file offset pointer. Also note that it calls the class' iterator, so that if a subsclass returns higher level records from its iterator, those records will also be returned from tail.


for chunk in f:
    ... process chunk ...

Class SharedAppendLines(SharedAppendFile)

A line oriented subclass of SharedAppendFile.

Class SharedCSVFile(SharedAppendLines,SharedAppendFile)

Shared access to a CSV file in UTF-8 encoding.

Method SharedCSVFile.__iter__(self)

Yield csv rows.

Method SharedCSVFile.writer(self)

Context manager for appending to a CSV file.

Class SharedWriteable

Wrapper for a writable file with supported mutex based cooperation.

This is mostly a proxy for the wrapped file exceptthat all .write calls are serialised and when used as a context manager other writers are blocked.

This is to support shared use of an output stream where certain outputs should be contiguous, such as a standard error stream used to maintain a status line or multiline messages.

Method SharedWriteable.__enter__(self)

Take the lock and return.

Method SharedWriteable.__exit__(self, *_)

Release the lock and proceed.

Method SharedWriteable.__getattr__(self, attr)

This object is mostly a proxy for the wrapped file.

Method SharedWriteable.write(self, s)

Obtain the lock and then run the wrapped .write method.

Release Log

Release 20201228: New SharedWriteable class to manage concurrent output with a mutexed .write method and a context manager for grouping larger uses.

Release 20190102: Context manager bugfix.

Release 20170608:

  • Facilities for shared files, split out from cs.fileutils.
  • SharedAppend* classes. lockfile function.

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