constant datatypes

Discussion in 'C Programming' started by mallikaarjuna24, Aug 19, 2007.

  1. I am not restricted from doing an assignment operation on a constant
    datatype ( say, an int ) but just warned of the consequence. why?
    mallikaarjuna24, Aug 19, 2007
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  2. Do you mean that your compiler accepts

    int main(void) {
    const int i;
    i = 0;

    ? If so, that, in my opinion, is either a bug or a pretty horrible
    extension. Regardless, though, for the C language, the _only_ case in which
    an error is required is if you use the #error directive. In all other
    cases, if the code is invalid the way it is here, compilers are allowed to
    accept it so long as they give notice of the problem. This is to allow
    compilers to provide extensions to standard C.

    The compilers I've tested don't accept this code; they give an unconditional
    error message. If yours doesn't, and you want to know why, you should
    consult the documentation and if you cannot find it, ask on a newsgroup
    which deals with your particular implementation. As far as standard C is
    concerned, the answer is that the code is invalid, but so long as compilers
    complain, they can then do what they want with it.
    Harald van =?UTF-8?B?RMSzaw==?=, Aug 19, 2007
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  3. mallikaarjuna24

    santosh Guest

    You've already posted a question similar to this. Wait a few hours for
    responses, since Usenet is slower than web forums.

    Coming to your question, int is not a constant data type. It is an integer
    type whose specific instances, i.e., objects of the type, can be
    *qualified* with the 'const' qualifier, to indicate to the compiler that
    the program should not modify the value of the object after it's
    initialisation. It's mainly to prevent inadvertent modifications by the
    programmer, and to allow the compiler to optionally perform optimisations
    on the object, like storing it in read-only memory.

    An attempt to modify a const qualified object invokes implementation
    dependent behaviour. The standard mandates a compiler to diagnose attempts
    to modify a const qualified object after it's initialisation, but places no
    other restrictions upon it, with regard to this erroneous construct.

    In summary, don't try to pull such apparently clever tricks. It's just
    likely to get you into trouble.
    santosh, Aug 19, 2007
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