[ZDP] BackTalk to Document Zope Developer's Guide (2.4 edition)/Zope Development Gotchas (User Contributed)

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Mon Dec 8 15:32:28 EST 2003

A comment to the paragraph below was recently added via http://zope.org/Documentation/Books/ZDG/current/Gotchas#0-0


Here is the place to add comments about "gotchas" related to Zope development.  We will try to work
these in to the ZDG narrative from time to time.

  % mcdonc - Jan. 17, 2002 6:23 pm - Methods declared in Product classes must
    have docstrings to callable by visiting them "through the web" (by calling
    them up by URL via a browser).

  % Anonymous User - Feb. 27, 2002 10:52 pm - Volatile attributes are not shared
    between threads, so using them for  page counters or holding state between 
    requests will not work (although it will sometimes appear to until your server
    is under load)

  % Anonymous User - May 22, 2002 7:18 am:
   DTMLMethod with a name ending '_alpha' was not rendered at all

  % Anonymous User - July 17, 2002 1:40 pm:
   From Zope Maillist:

   On Tue, 16 Jul 2002, Ross Boylan wrote:
   > The Zope Developer's Guide and the API docs (Zope 2.5) present
   > different stories about how to add things to object managers.  I don't
   > really follow what the API stuff is doing.  This is a request for
   > clarification.
   > Devguide says do
   > def addFunction(dispatcher, id):
   >    "Create object and add to self"
   >    p = SomeProduct(id)
   >    dispatcher.Destination()._setObject(id, p)
   > This makes sense, though, as commented at
   > http://www.zope.org//Members/michel/Projects/Interfaces/ObjectManager,
   > it relies on a private, undocumented method.  addFunction is in outer
   > scope of a module, and is hooked up wtih various calls in ___init__.py.

   Call this the "add function".  Defined by the product, it is passed
   the dispatcher for the ObjectManager to which the object is being added.
   As you say, it apparently uses a private function, however despite
   it's (historical artifact of a) name, it is the proper way to do
   this operation.  And it is documented, in the Dev Guide <wry grin>.

   > On the other hand, the ObjectManager API says to do
   > self.manage_addProduct['OFSP'].manage_addFolder(id, title).

   This is the action that non-Product code uses to add an object from
   the Product to an arbitrary object manager.  'self' being the object
   manager in question (eg: when called from an External Method, self
   will be the folder the External Method was called on).  This sequence
   *calls* the "add function" defined above.  In this case, it is
   calling the add function defined by the Folder object in the OFSP

   > First, what scope should that be done in?  Second, this seems to
   > create one product (OFSP) and then add a folder to it, so that it
   > creates two, nested products.

   Actually, it doesn't.  This syntax has bothered me since I first
   encoutered it, and I'm sure I'm not alone.  But we are stuck with
   it (for now).  "manage_addProduct[<someproductname>]" is, essentially,
   a lookup in a registry keyed by product name.  So that part looks
   up the Product from the registry, and then you have access to the
   module level functions in that Product, such as the "add function"
   defined above.

   > The API for Folder mentions manage_addFolder as a constructor, but
   > again the scope is unclear to me.  Presumably it needs to know what to
   > add it to, but that is not passed in.

   You are calling the method on 'self' in the API example, or on some
   other reference to an ObjectManager in some other context.
   (Literally 'context' if you were doing this from a pythonscript.)
   'manage_addProduct' gets "acquired" (from where I'm not quite sure
   <wry grin>), and some magic that I haven't had a need to look in
   to arranges things so that your add function gets passed a dispatcher
   that has that ObjectManager as its Destination() as its first
   argument, followed by whatever arguments (id, title) in the API
   example) you pass it explicitly.  This is an example of Zope2
   "magic" that we are trying hard to eliminate from Zope3 <grin>.

   > Finally, the use of id in two places in the first code snippet (one
   > apparently associated with the container, the other with the object)
   > seems like an invitation to trouble.  Why is it done that way?

   Tell us about it.  This is an old Zope2 (or was it bobo?) design
   decision that has been revisited in Zope3.  In Zope3, only containers
   know about ids in the general case, not the objects referenced by

   > One reason I want to know this is that I'm considering having a
   > container that would automatically label (or set id) of its contents
   > (e.g., 'a' is first, 'b' is second....).
   > Thanks for any light you can shed.

   Hopefully I haven't told you anything untrue up above, but if I have
   someone will doubtless correct me <grin>.


  % eckamm - Nov. 11, 2002 10:05 pm:
   This one has bit me on more than one occassion:
       manage_add_XYZ_form = DTMLFile('dtml/manage_add_XYZ_form')
   instead of:
       manage_add_XYZ_form = DTMLFile('dtml/manage_add_XYZ_form', globals())

   The error message is tough to interpret; it looks like an attempt
   is made to find manage_add_XYZ_form.dtml in {base}/lib/python/dtml/.
   This may send you on a wild goose chase if you're like me.

  % slinkp - Mar. 21, 2003 12:53 pm:
   i just posted this to the zope list...
   I find "Monkey patches" a useful way to expand or modify functionality provided by
   zope or 3rd-party products, but I just discovered something very important:
   it's apparently NOT safe to "refresh" a MonkeyPatch-style product.

   I have a monkeypatch that works fine until I refresh it, then I get mysterious
   errors like "Object of type 'None' is not callable" with no indication in the
   traceback of what object is None or even what's trying to call it!
   I've spent hours in a debugging session trying to find out what's None and
   came up with nothing.

   Then i discovered that if i restart zope, everything's fine. :-P

  % Anonymous User - Mar. 29, 2003 12:43 am:
   slinkp: Yes, that's right, you should never try to refresh monkey patch
   products. However, I haven't found the right way to spread this warning
   so that the people who need to know it will hear it. How do you suggest
   this be documented?
   Shane Hathaway

  % Anonymous User - Aug. 5, 2003 4:51 pm:
   Seems obvious to some, but wansn't obvious to me:

   ZCatalog method searchResults' sort_limit argument only works when sort_on
   argument is present as well. A "nice to have" would be to limit unsorted
   results coming back from the catalog as opposed to doing it after the fact.

  % slinkp - Dec. 8, 2003 3:32 pm:
   Don't confuse paths and URLs. Specifically, avoid using absolute_url(1) or path variables from REQUEST when
   constructing paths that will be fed to restrictedTraverse() or similar. Everything works fine until virtual
   hosting comes into play, at which point some part of your path may be meaningful to the client but not
   correspond to any object in Zope. This can lead to much hair-tearing when your working app suddenly breaks at
   deployment time. Solution: if you need to fiddle with paths, use '/'.join(foo.getPhysicalPath()) instead.
   This is unaffected by virtual hosting.
   The behavior of absolute_url(1) *may* change in zope 2.7 or later, we're still arguing about it :-)

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