Embedding multiple interpreters

Gregory Ewing greg.ewing at canterbury.ac.nz
Fri Dec 6 07:58:49 CET 2013

Garthy wrote:
> I am running into problems when using multiple interpreters [1] and 
> I am presently trying to track down these issues. Can anyone familiar 
> with the process of embedding multiple interpreters have a skim of the 
> details below and let me know of any obvious problems?

As far as I know, multiple interpreters in one process is
not really supported. There *seems* to be partial support for
it in the code, but there is no way to fully isolate them
from each other.

Why do you think you need multiple interpreters, as opposed
to one interpreter with multiple threads? If you're trying
to sandbox the threads from each other and/or from the rest
of the system, be aware that it's extremely difficult to
securely sandbox Python code. You'd be much safer to run
each one in its own process and rely on OS-level protections.

> - I understand that for the most part only a single interpreter will be 
> running at a time due to the GIL.

Yes, as far as I can tell, there is only one GIL in a given

> - I don't need to share objects between interpreters (if it is even 
> possible- I don't know).

The hard part is *not* sharing objects between interpreters.
If nothing else, all the builtin type objects, constants, etc.
will be shared.


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