[IPython-User] Starting kernel outside the main thread

Loïc Estève loic.esteve@ymail....
Wed Feb 27 16:24:02 CST 2013


recently I have been experimenting with embedding an ipython kernel inside a 
C++ program for inspecting/debugging purposes.

For reasons that probably don't matter, embedding the kernel doesn't happen 
in the main thread and you tend to hit "ValueError: signal only works in 
main thread" exceptions from multiple places in the code.

My very naive understanding is that the signal registering is done so that 
Control-C will shut down the kernel cleanly. In my particular example I 
don't have any interactive terminal attached to the kernel so that there is 
no way for me to hit Control-C.

I just went for the simplest solution I could see which was monkey-patching 
signal.signal and wrapping it inside a try except. A simplified gist 
illustrating the issue I had and a possible work-around is available at 

Am I going to be bitten me pretty hard later down the line if I go down this 
signal monkey-patching route? Is there a better way to support embedding 
kernel outside the main thread? 

Finally could this work-around be used to have non-blocking kernels, i.e. 
with the gist above in mind you could start multiple kernels in different 
threads (I guess you would need to customise the default kernel-<pid>.json 
naming to get a different connection file for each thread)?


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