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Re: [cdt-dev] Do we really need a refresh in Debug View?

Hi John,
I agree with you also that in many practical situations it's very helpful to flush the caches and refetch data. 
However there is more to the refresh actions story.  IRefreshAllTarget is invoked by a different action then the one in the view.  It's invoked by the "Refresh Debug Views" top-level menu/toolbar action which is tied to the "Debug Update Modes" action set.  This action set also enables the "Update Modes" menus in the various debug views that support them.

The refresh actions which are in the views are implemented using the org.eclipse.cdt.dsf.debug.internal.ui.viewmodel.actions.RefreshActionDelegate, and they refresh only the contents of the view in which they are registered.  There is also a global command handler: RefreshHandler, which is active whenever the DSF refresh action is active in a view.  This handler is tied to the top level menu File->Refresh action. 

Would it be sufficient if for our users if the toolbar icon wasn't there bug the top-level handler was still available?  Unfortunately the standard key binding for the refresh command (F5) is mapped to the Step Into action when debugging.  But we could also create a new mapping for refresh (e.g. Shift+F5).  Also, we could leave the action delegate as public API so that any product that wants it, could add it without much trouble.


John Cortell wrote:
I agree with you that the reuse of the icon is confusing and should be changed. As for whether you can submit a bugzilla/patch to remove it: absolutely; you certainly can. I can predict with high confidence, though, that it won't be accepted. Generally speaking, committers don't develop useless features. If it's in there, I assure you there's a reason for it, and probably a good one. Before considering a patch to remove an action, a good first step is to discover what the action does and why someone felt it was an important capability.

The action invokes the IRefrehAllTarget interface, which is documented as follows:

A retargetable action target which allows a debugger to refresh all of its active views with fresh data from the debug target.

This capability is very useful. While a debugger should be smart and try to update as much as possible automatically, coherency between the many features/views of a debugger is never going to be 100% reliable. For example, there will be cases where the user does something in one particular view that affects data being displayed in another view, and because of the complexity of the relationship, or because of performance considerations, that second view gets out of synch with the target--perhaps others, too. For this reason, it's important that the user have the ability to tell the debugger to toss out all cached information and retrieve (and display) the latest target state. In practice, the action is probably not used all that often. Certainly not when just doing basic debugging.

This is very similar to how Refresh works in views that display workspace resources. You can't rely on Eclipse always being in synch with the file system, so sometimes you need to tell it to synch up.


At 03:54 PM 1/15/2010, Mehregani, Navid wrote:
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Do we really need a refresh button in Debug view? I think Debug view should automatically refresh when need be.
To make things more confusing, this button uses the same icon as restart button.  Can I submit a Bugzilla and patch to remove this button?
If there is a good reason for this button, please enlighten us.


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