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@page tutorial_page Tutorial
This is a brief guide to to the fundamentals of building messaging
applications using Qpid Proton C++.
Proton provides an "event-driven" programming model, where you
implement a subclass of `proton::messaging_handler` and override
functions that react to various AMQP events (connections opening and
closing, messages being delivered, and so on).
The examples below show how to implement handlers for clients and
servers and how to run them using the `proton::container`, a portable,
easy-to-use way to build single-threaded clients or servers.
Some of the examples require an AMQP *broker* that can receive, store,
and send messages. @ref broker.cpp defines a simple example broker. If
run without arguments, it listens on ``, the standard AMQP
port on all network interfaces. To use a different port or network
interface, use the `-a` option.
broker -a <host>:<port>
Instead of the example broker, you can use any AMQP 1.0-compliant
broker. You must configure your broker to have a queue (or topic)
named "examples".
The `helloworld` examples take an optional URL argument. The other
examples take an option `-a URL`. A URL looks like this:
It usually defaults to ``, but you can change
this if your broker is on a different host or port, or you want to use
a different queue or topic name (the ADDRESS part of the URL).
Hello World!
\dontinclude helloworld.cpp
Tradition dictates that we start with Hello World! This example sends
a message to a broker and then receives the same message back. In a
realistic system the sender and receiver would normally be in
different processes. The complete example is @ref helloworld.cpp
We will include the following classes. `proton::container` runs an
event loop which dispatches events to a
`proton::messaging_handler`. This allows a *reactive* style of
programming which is well suited to messaging
applications. `proton::connection` and `proton::delivery` are AMQP
entities used in the handler functions. `proton::url` is a simple
parser for the URL format mentioned above.
\skip proton/connection
\until proton/url
We will define a class `hello_world` which is a subclass of
`proton::messaging_handler` and overrides functions to handle the
events of interest in sending and receiving a message.
\skip class hello_world
\until {}
`proton::messaging_handler::on_container_start()` is called when the
event loop first starts. We handle that by establishing a connection
and creating a sender and a receiver.
\skip on_container_start
\until }
\until }
`proton::messaging_handler::on_sendable()` is called when the message
can be transferred over the associated sender link to the remote
peer. We create a `proton::message`, set the message body to `"Hello
World!"`, and send the message. Then we close the sender, since we
only want to send one message. Closing the sender will prevent further
calls to `proton::messaging_handler::on_sendable()`.
\skip on_sendable
\until }
`proton::messaging_handler::on_message()` is called when a message is
received. We just print the body of the message and close the
connection, as we only want one message.
\skip on_message
\until }
The message body is a `proton::value`. See @ref types_page for more
on how to extract the message body as type-safe C++ values.
Our `main` function creates an instance of the `hello_world` handler
and a `proton::container` using that handler. Calling
`proton::container::run()` sets things in motion and returns when we
close the connection. It may throw an exception, which will be a
subclass of `proton::error`. That in turn is a subclass of
\skip main
\until }
\until }
\until }
Asynchronous send and receive
Of course, these `Hello World!` examples are very artificial,
communicating as they do over a network connection but with the same
process. A more realistic example involves communication between
separate processes, which could indeed be running on completely
separate machines.
Let's separate the sender from the receiver, and transfer more than a
single message between them.
We'll start with a simple sender, @ref simple_send.cpp.
\dontinclude simple_send.cpp
As with the previous example, we define the application logic in a
class that handles events. Because we are transferring more than one
message, we need to keep track of how many we have sent. We'll use a
`sent` member variable for that. The `total` member variable will
hold the number of messages we want to send.
\skip class simple_send
\until total
As before, we use the
`proton::messaging_handler::on_container_start()` event to establish
our sender link over which we will transfer messages.
\skip on_container_start
\until }
AMQP defines a credit-based flow-control mechanism. Flow control
allows the receiver to control how many messages it is prepared to
receive at a given time and thus prevents any component being
overwhelmed by the number of messages it is sent.
In the `proton::messaging_handler::on_sendable()` callback, we check
that our sender has credit before sending messages. We also check that
we haven't already sent the required number of messages.
\skip on_sendable
\until }
\until }
The `proton::sender::send()` call above is asynchronous. When it
returns, the message has not yet actually been transferred across the
network to the receiver. By handling the
`proton::messaging_handler::on_tracker_accept()` event, we can get
notified when the receiver has received and accepted the message. In
our example we use this event to track the confirmation of the
messages we have sent. We only close the connection and exit when the
receiver has received all the messages we wanted to send.
\skip on_tracker_accept
\until }
\until }
If we are disconnected after a message is sent and before it has been
confirmed by the receiver, it is said to be "in doubt". We don't know
whether or not it was received. In this example, we will handle that
by resending any in-doubt messages. This is known as an
"at-least-once" guarantee, since each message should eventually be
received at least once, though a given message may be received more
than once (i.e., duplicates are possible). In the
`proton::messaging_handler::on_transport_close()` callback, we reset
the sent count to reflect only those that have been confirmed. The
library will automatically try to reconnect for us, and when our
sender is sendable again, we can restart from the point we know the
receiver got to.
\skip on_transport_close
\until }
\dontinclude simple_recv.cpp
Now let's look at the corresponding receiver, @ref simple_recv.cpp.
This time we'll use an `expected` member variable for for the number
of messages we expect and a `received` variable to count how many we
have received so far.
\skip class simple_recv
\until received
We handle `proton::messaging_handler::on_container_start()` by
creating our receiver, much like we did for the sender.
\skip on_container_start
\until }
We also handle the `proton::messaging_handler::on_message()` event for
received messages and print the message out as in the `Hello World!`
examples. However, we add some logic to allow the receiver to wait
for a given number of messages and then close the connection and
exit. We also add some logic to check for and ignore duplicates, using
a simple sequential ID scheme.
\skip on_message
\until }
Direct send and receive
Sending between these two examples requires an intermediary broker
since neither accepts incoming connections. AMQP allows us to send
messages directly between two processes. In that case, one or other of
the processes needs to accept incoming connections. Let's create a
modified version of the receiving example that does this with @ref
\dontinclude direct_recv.cpp
There are only two differences here. Instead of initiating a link (and
implicitly a connection), we listen for incoming connections.
\skip on_container_start
\until }
When we have received all the expected messages, we then stop
listening for incoming connections by calling
\skip on_message
\until }
\until }
\until }
\until }
You can use the @ref simple_send.cpp example to send to this receiver
directly. (Note: you will need to stop any broker that is listening on
the 5672 port, or else change the port used by specifying a different
address to each example via the `-a` command-line switch).
We can also modify the sender to allow the original receiver to
connect to it, in @ref direct_send.cpp. Again, that requires just two
\dontinclude direct_send.cpp
As with the modified receiver, instead of initiating establishment of a
link, we listen for incoming connections.
\skip on_container_start
\until }
When we have received confirmation of all the messages we sent, we call
`container::listener::stop()` to exit.
\skip on_tracker_accept
\until }
\until }
To try this modified sender, run the original @ref simple_recv.cpp
against it.
The symmetry in the underlying AMQP wire protocol that enables this is
quite unique and elegant, and in reflecting this the Proton API
provides a flexible toolkit for implementing all sorts of interesting
Request and response
A common pattern is to send a request message and expect a response
message in return. AMQP has special support for this pattern. Let's
have a look at a simple example. We'll start with @ref server.cpp, the
program that will process the request and send the response. Note that
we are still using a broker in this example.
Our server will provide a very simple service: it will respond with
the body of the request converted to uppercase.
\dontinclude server.cpp
\skip class server
\until };
The code here is not too different from the simple receiver example.
However, when we receive a request in
`proton::messaging_handler::on_message`, we look at the
`proton::message::reply_to` address and create a sender with that
address for the response. We'll cache the senders in case we get
further requests with the same `reply_to`.
Now let's create a simple @ref client.cpp to test this service out.
\dontinclude client.cpp
Our client takes a list of strings to send as requests.
\skipline client(
Since we will be sending and receiving, we create a sender and a
receiver in `proton::messaging_handler::on_container_start`. Our
receiver has a blank address and sets the `dynamic` flag to true,
which means we expect the remote end (the broker or server) to assign
a unique address for us.
\skip on_container_start
\until }
Now we need a function to send the next request from our list of
requests. We set the `reply_to` address to be the dynamically assigned
address of our receiver.
\skip send_request
\until }
We need to use the address assigned by the broker as the `reply_to`
address of our requests, so we can't send them until our receiver has
been set up. To do that, we add an
`proton::messaging_handler::on_receiver_open()` method to our handler
class and use that as the trigger to send our first request.
\skip on_receiver_open
\until }
When we receive a reply, we send the next request.
\skip on_message
\until }
\until }
\until }
Direct request and response
We can avoid the intermediary process by writing a server that accepts
connections directly, @ref server_direct.cpp. It involves the
following changes to our original server:
\dontinclude server_direct.cpp
Our server must generate unique `reply-to` addresses for links from
the client that request a dynamic address (previously this was done by
the broker). We use a simple counter.
\skip generate_address
\until }
Next we need to handle incoming requests for links with dynamic
addresses from the client. We give the link a unique address and
record it in our `senders` map.
\skip on_sender_open
\until }
Note that we are interested in *sender* links above because we are
implementing the server. A *receiver* link created on the client
corresponds to a *sender* link on the server.
Finally when we receive a message we look up its `reply_to` in our
senders map and send the reply.
\skip on_message
\until }
\until }
\until }