C++ libcurl: using non-blocking loop to detect HTTP status code change


Before updating at a scheduled time, a web page has a HTTP status code of 503. When new data is added to the page after the scheduled time, the HTTP status code changes to 200.


Using a non-blocking loop, to detect this change in the HTTP status code from 503 to 200 as fast as possible. With the current code seen further below, a WHILE loop successfully listens for the change in HTTP status code and prints out a success statement. Once 200 is detected, a break statement stops the loop.

However, it seems that the program must wait for a response every time a HTTP request is made before moving to the next WHILE loop iteration, behaving in a blocking manner.


Using libcurl C++, how can the below program be modified to transmit requests (to a single URL) to detect a HTTP status code change without having to wait for the response before sending another request?

Please note: I am aware that excessive requests may be deemed as unfriendly (this is an experiment for my own URL).

Before posting this question, the following SO questions and resources have been consulted:

What's been tried so far:

  • Using multi-threading with a FOR loop in C to repeatedly call function to detect HTTP code change, which had a slight latency advantage. See code here: https://pastebin.com/73dBwkq3
  • Utilised OpenMP, again when using a FOR loop instead of the original WHILE loop. Latency advantage wasn't substantial.
  • Using the libcurl documentation C tutorials to try to replicate a program that listens to just one URL for changes, using the asynchronous multi-interface with difficulty.

Current attempt using curl_easy_opt:

#include <iostream>
#include <iomanip>
#include <vector>
#include <string>
#include <curl/curl.h>

// Function for writing callback
size_t write_callback(char *ptr, size_t size, size_t nmemb, void *userdata) {

        std::vector<char> *response = reinterpret_cast<std::vector<char> *>(userdata);
        response->insert(response->end(), ptr, ptr+nmemb);
        return nmemb;

long request(CURL *curl, const std::string &url) {

        std::vector<char> response;
        long response_code;

        curl_easy_setopt(curl, CURLOPT_URL, url.c_str());
        curl_easy_getinfo(curl, CURLINFO_RESPONSE_CODE, &response_code);
        curl_easy_setopt(curl, CURLOPT_WRITEFUNCTION, write_callback);
        curl_easy_setopt(curl, CURLOPT_WRITEDATA, &response);

        auto res = curl_easy_perform(curl);

        if (response_code == 200) {
                std::cout << "SUCCESS" << std::endl;

        return response_code;

int main() {
        CURL *curl = curl_easy_init();

       while (true) {
               long response_code = request(curl, "www.example.com");
               if (response_code == 200) {
                       break; // Page updated

    return 0;


Using C++ and libcurl, does anyone know how a WHILE loop can be used to repeatedly send a request to one URL only, without having to wait for the response in between sending requests? The aim of this is to detect the change as quickly as possible.

I understand that there is ample libcurl documentation, but have had difficulties grasping the multi-interface aspects to help apply them to this issue.

Read more here: https://stackoverflow.com/questions/67895581/c-libcurl-using-non-blocking-loop-to-detect-http-status-code-change

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