Source code

Here you can download the source code: HNtuple.tar.gz (version from 21 Sept 2009)
Unpack: tar xvfz HNtuple.tar.gz
The code will be unpacked to your present directory. Files: hntuple.h,, TupleLinkDef.h, MakeSO
Compile: make -f MakeSO
Library files (static and dynamic) will be created. The name of a dynamic library is
Clean code: make -f MakeSO clean

Learn by example

Let's try to create our HNtuple object interactively.

Launch root and load the library: gSystem->Load("")
Now root knows the new abstract type HNtuple. Create the object:

HNtuple myObj("test", "some description");

As you can see, you do not need to define the list of variables, just start putting some values:

myObj["id"] = 2;
myObj["mass"] = 0.511;

Let us fill the ntuple now!


Since now the list of variables in your HNtuple is fixed and you cannot add them any more. But you can go on with filling some new values to existing variables. For example:

myObj["id"] = 3;
myObj["mass"] = 0.611;

myObj["id"] = 3;
myObj["mass"] = 0.551;

Usually, you do such a cycle (putting new set of values and filling the ntuple) in a loop or in a function called every event. At any moment you can print or draw your HNtuple. Remember that root identifies objects by their names, our HNtuple's name is test


You want to write your HNtuple to a file. Let us create a new file:

TFile myFile("myrootfile.root", "recreate");

Oh no! My object has disappeared! Not quite, if you typed .pwd prior to file creation you would see Rint:/
Now if you type .pwd you will see myrootfile.root:/

In other words, all root objects are placed in some directories. We would like to have our HNtuple in a directory of a new file in order to write it. We have to change the directory the HNtuple is attached to. First, let's create the pointer to TDirectory with the file:

TDirectory *ptr = &myFile;

This is so easy, because TFile is inherited directly from TDirectory type. Now we can go back to the directory with our HNtuple:


We will move the HNtuple object to the file directory.


You see that your HNtuple is in the file directory and you can easily write it.


Exit the root now (.q) and reopen it with the file just created:

root -l myrootfile.root

What you see inside is just NTuple (not HNtuple) and you can draw it without any library loading.

How to use it

Let us have a look at the interface of the HNtuple class to address some possible questions about the usage.

class HNtuple: public TObject

   HNtuple(const char* name, const char* title, Int_t bufsize = 32000); 
   HNtuple(const char* name, const char* title, const char* varlist, Int_t bufsize = 32000); 
   virtual ~HNtuple();

   Int_t Write(const char* name, Int_t option, Int_t bufsize); 
   Float_t& operator[](const std::string& key); 
   const Float_t& operator[](const std::string& key) const; 
   Int_t fill(); 


    TNtuple *ptrNt;
    // ... the rest of the class 

  • To use this type you have to include the header file #include "hntuple.h"
  • HNtuple is inherited from TObject (and not from HNtuple) because I wanted to store as the output NTuple type. It would be impossible when deriving from NTuple. The diagram looks as follows:

    UML diagram of HNtuple

  • The naming convention of class methods is that they start with small letters... but the root has a different approach and I had to keep Write method with a capital letter to have a polymorphic behaviour. Note that all arguments of a Write method have some default values defined in a base class, that is, in TObject. Therefore we can simply call Write()
  • You can book HNtuple in a classical way, like any root NTuple. In such a case you cannot extend the list of variables, they are fixed by your definition. However, filling of variables is the same as in the example, i.e. myNTuple["variable"] = 7.0; and the order of filling is completely arbitrary (no more remembering of the proper sequence of variables in Float_t* array, in fact, there is none variable array now). Once you have put the values, call fill() method.

-- WitoldPrzygoda - 05 Jul 2007
Topic revision: r2 - 2009-09-21, WitoldPrzygoda
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