Chapter 7. The C Client

Although the Java interface to ZooKeeper is the predominant one, the C ZooKeeper client binding is also popular among ZooKeeper developers and forms the foundation for bindings in other languages. This chapter focuses on this binding. To illustrate the development of ZooKeeper applications with the C API, we’ll reimplement the master of our master–worker example in C. The general idea is to expose the differences when compared to the Java API through an example.

The main reference for the C API is the zookeeper.h file in the ZooKeeper distribution, and the instructions to build the client library are given in the README file of the project distribution. Alternatively, you can use ant compile-native, which automates it all. Before going into code snippets, we’ll give a quick summary of how to set up the development environment to help you get started.

When we build the C client, it produces two libraries: one for multithreaded clients and the other for single-threaded clients. Most of this chapter assumes the multithreaded library is being used; we discuss the single-threaded version toward the end of the chapter, but we encourage the reader to focus on multithreaded implementations.

Setting Up the Development Environment

In the ZooKeeper distribution, we can ship precompiled JAR files that are ready to run on any platform. To compile natively using C, we need to build the required shared libraries before we can build our native C ZooKeeper applications. ...

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