Write snippets of code in your documentation and execute them as regression tests.

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GDB the GNU debugger

byexample can interpret and run examples for a GDB session.

Run byexample as:

$ byexample -l gdb your-file-here                # byexample: +skip

You need to have the debugger installed first on your system, check its download page.

Stability: experimental - non backward compatibility changes are possible or even removal between versions (even patch versions).

Quick example

To show you this, let’s first create a program to debug:

$ cat test/ds/param-echo.c                      # byexample: -capture
#include <stdio.h>
int main(int argc, char* argv[]) {
    for (; argc > 0; --argc)
        printf("%s\n", argv[argc-1]);
    return 0;
$ gcc -o w/param-echo.exe -ggdb -O0 test/ds/param-echo.c  # byexample: +timeout=10

The program is quite simple, it just prints its parameters in reverse order

$ ./w/param-echo.exe

$ ./w/param-echo.exe foo bar

Find interactive examples

Now, let’s debug it with GDB

byexample uses the (gdb) string as the primary prompt to find GDB examples like these:

(gdb) file ./w/param-echo.exe
Reading symbols <...>

(gdb) start foo bar
Starting program: <...>

(gdb) print argc
$1 = 3

(gdb) print argv[1]
$2 = "foo"

GDB specific options

$ byexample -l gdb --show-options       # byexample: +norm-ws
gdb's specific options