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message editor, or human-readable serialization?

It's easy enough to stream ICE messages to a file and to read from them. But is it possible to view and edit the information in a human-readable format? For example, is there a generic ICE message editor? Or, is there a way to select another serialization format such as XML?
Serialization to/from protocol buffers is an option, as there are subsequent transformation targets available as well as a pb editor, but this two-step process bears various problems.

Thoughts and tips appreciated!

Thanks a lot,


  • bernard
    bernard Jupiter, FL
    Hi Matz,

    In order to decode a stream of bytes encoded using the Ice encoding, you need to know which Slice types are in this stream; the Ice encoding is very compact and does not include type-information, only the encoded values.

    You may want to have a look at Freeze and the dumpdb utility. Freeze allows you to store Slice types in a database (Berkeley DB) and the dumpdb utility lets you dump the content of this database, as long as you provide the associated Slice definitions.

  • Yaml

    Thanks, Bernard. That is an option, indeed. We wanted to avoid the requirement for installing a database just for this feature, but it might be worthwhile.
    The other option we're exploring is to serialize and de-serialize with YAML. This means it is a language-specific serialization, so it can only be read in from the same language that wrote it out. But it is very easy to implement and the data looks rather human-readable, at least the Slice-to-Python-to-YAML.

    Thanks again for your quick reply and help!

    Best regards,