cmd/protoc-gen-go: generate descriptor and plugin with reflection

In CL/152020, we checked in pre-generated versions of descriptor and plugin.
This CL makes it such that they are generated by protoc-gen-go.

We modify protoc-gen-go to avoid reflection support by default
since the binary size increase is still an issue to investigate.
Reflection support is temporarily enabled by setting a special
PROTOC_GEN_GO_ENABLE_REFLECT environment variable.

Reflection support is always enabled for descriptor and plugin.
Furthermore, we change descriptor to depend on the protoapi package
instead of the proto package. The reason we do not switch to protoapi
for all generated protos is because we still depend on v1 proto
for the table-driven InternalMessageInfo type. Dropping it from descriptor
is semantically correct, but does incur slight performance cost.
It does not seem appropriate to drop it for all generated messages.

We could move InternalMessageInfo to protoapi, but the logic behind that
is significant.

Change-Id: I5c3fff7f6eab1a5a2399049d42fa6bf42d4c93f9
Reviewed-by: Damien Neil <>
11 files changed
tree: 271cfd2b7de7d1702c4894a28fd81e3541b49320
  1. .gitignore
  2. .travis.yml
  9. cmd/
  10. encoding/
  11. go.mod
  12. go.sum
  13. internal/
  14. proto/
  15. protogen/
  16. reflect/
  17. regenerate.bash
  18. runtime/
  19. test.bash
  20. types/

Next Generation Go Protocol Buffers

WARNING: This repository is in active development. There are no guarantees about API stability. Breaking changes will occur until a stable release is made and announced.

This repository is for the development of the next major Go implementation of protocol buffers. This library makes breaking API changes relative to the existing Go protobuf library. Of particular note, this API aims to make protobuf reflection a first-class feature of the API and implements the protobuf ecosystem in terms of reflection.

Design Documents

List of relevant design documents:


We appreciate community contributions. See

Reporting Issues

Issues regarding the new API can be filed at Please use a APIv2: prefix in the title to make it clear that the issue is regarding the new API work.