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I thought that using large model meant that I could use more than 64K of data!
What does the error message ``DGROUP data allocation exceeds 64K'' mean, and what can I do about it? I thought that using large model meant that I could use more than 64K of data! Even in large memory models, MS-DOS compilers apparently toss certain data (strings, some initialized global or static v...
2015-03-20, 1024👍, 0💬

I had a frustrating problem which turned out to be caused by the line ....
I had a frustrating problem which turned out to be caused by the line printf("%d", n); where n was actually a long int. I thought that ANSI function prototypes were supposed to guard against argument type mismatches like this. A:When a function accepts a variable number of arguments, its prototype d...
2016-01-11, 1023👍, 0💬

People keep saying that the behavior of ...
People keep saying that the behavior of i = i++ is undefined, but I just tried it on an ANSI-conforming compiler, and got the results I expected. A compiler may do anything it likes when faced with undefined behavior (and, within limits, with implementation-defined and unspecified behavior), includi...
2015-11-18, 1022👍, 0💬

Dont ANSI function prototypes render lint obsolete?
Dont ANSI function prototypes render lint obsolete? Not really. First of all, prototypes work only if they are present and correct; an inadvertently incorrect prototype is worse than useless. Secondly, lint checks consistency across multiple source files, and checks data declarations as well as func...
2015-05-01, 1022👍, 0💬

What is the ANSI C Standard?
What is the ANSI C Standard? In 1983, the American National Standards Institute (ANSI) commissioned a committee, X3J11, to standardize the C language. After a long, arduous process, including several widespread public reviews, the committee's work was finally ratified as ANS X3.159-1989 on December ...
2016-01-15, 1021👍, 0💬

I keep getting errors due to library functions being undefined, but I am including all the right header files.
I keep getting errors due to library functions being undefined, but I am including all the right header files. In the general case of calling code in an external library, using #include to pull in the right header file(s) is only half of the story; you also have to tell the linker to search the exte...
2015-07-14, 1020👍, 0💬

I heard that you have to include stdio.h before calling printf. Why?
I heard that you have to include stdio.h before calling printf. Why? So that a proper prototype for printf will be in scope. A compiler may use a different calling sequence for functions which accept variable-length argument lists. (It might do so if calls using variable-length argument lists were l...
2015-06-17, 1020👍, 0💬

I inherited some code which contains far too many ...
I inherited some code which contains far too many #ifdef's for my taste. How can I preprocess the code to leave only one conditional compilation set, without running it through the preprocessor and expanding all of the #include's and #define's as well? There are programs floating around called unifd...
2016-01-29, 1018👍, 0💬

Why does everyone say not to use scanf? What should I use instead?
Why does everyone say not to use scanf? What should I use instead? scanf has a number of problems, its %s format has the same problem that gets() has --it's hard to guarantee that the receiving buffer won't overflow. More generally, scanf is designed for relatively structured, formatted input (its n...
2015-10-21, 1015👍, 0💬

People always say that good style is important
People always say that good style is important, but when they go out of their way to use clear techniques and make their programs readable, they seem to end up with less efficient programs. Since efficiency is so important, isn't it necessary to sacrifice some style and readability? It's true that g...
2015-05-06, 1015👍, 0💬

My ANSI compiler complains about a mismatch when it see
My ANSI compiler complains about a mismatch when it sees extern int func(float); int func(x) float x; { ... You have mixed the new-style prototype declaration ``extern int func(float);'' with the old-style definition ``int func(x) float x;''. It is usually possible to mix the two styles but not in t...
2016-01-13, 1014👍, 0💬

I have got this tricky preprocessing I want to do and I cant figure out a way to do it.
I have got this tricky preprocessing I want to do and I cant figure out a way to do it. C's preprocessor is not intended as a general-purpose tool. (Note also that it is not guaranteed to be available as a separate program.) Rather than forcing it to do something inappropriate, you might want to wri...
2016-01-19, 1013👍, 0💬

What does the message Automatic aggregate intialization is an ANSI feature mean?
What does the message Automatic aggregate intialization is an ANSI feature'' mean? My compiler is complaining about valid ANSI code. Messages like these are typically emitted by pre-ANSI compilers which have been upgraded just enough to detect (but not properly translate) new C features which were i...
2015-11-30, 1013👍, 0💬

What printf format should I use for a typedef like size_t when I don't know whether it is long or some other type?
What printf format should I use for a typedef like size_t when I don't know whether it is long or some other type? Use a cast to convert the value to a known, conservatively-sized type, then use the printf format matching that type. For example, to print the size of a type, you might use printf("%lu...
2015-11-04, 1012👍, 0💬

Did C have any Year 2000 problems?
Did C have any Year 2000 problems? No, although poorly-written C programs might have. The tm_year field of struct tm holds the value of the year minus 1900; this field therefore contains the value 100 for the year 2000. Code that uses tm_year correctly (by adding or subtracting 1900 when converting ...
2015-08-03, 1012👍, 0💬

How can I shut off the warning ...
How can I shut off the ``warning: possible pointer alignment problem'' message which lint gives me for each call to malloc? A modern lint shouldn't be complaining about this. Once upon a time, lint did not and could not know that malloc ``returns a pointer to space suitably aligned for storage of an...
2015-05-05, 1011👍, 0💬

Why are some ANSI ISO Standard library functions showing you
Why are some ANSI/ISO Standard library functions showing up as undefined, even though I've got an ANSI compiler? It's possible to have a compiler available which accepts ANSI syntax, but not to have ANSI-compatible header files or run-time libraries installed. (In fact, this situation is rather comm...
2015-11-30, 1010👍, 0💬

Why isnt my procedure call working? The compiler seems to skip right over it
Why isnt my procedure call working? The compiler seems to skip right over it Does the code look like this? myprocedure; C has only functions, and function calls always require parenthesized argument lists, even if empty. Use myprocedure(); Without the parentheses, the reference to the function name ...
2015-06-01, 1010👍, 0💬

Some people say that gotos are evil and that I should never use them. Isnt that a bit extreme
Some people say that gotos are evil and that I should never use them. Isnt that a bit extreme rogramming style, like writing style, is somewhat of an art and cannot be codified by inflexible rules, although discussions about style often seem to center exclusively around such rules. In the case of th...
2015-05-08, 1010👍, 0💬

I am trying to take some square roots
I'm trying to take some square roots, and I've simplified the code down to main() { printf("%f\n", sqrt(144.)); } but I'm still getting crazy numbers. Make sure that you have #included &lt;math.h>, and correctly declared other functions returning double. (Another library function to be careful w...
2015-07-01, 1009👍, 0💬

Should I use symbolic names like TRUE and FALSE for Boolean constants, or plain 1 and 0?
Should I use symbolic names like TRUE and FALSE for Boolean constants, or plain 1 and 0? It's your choice. Preprocessor macros like TRUE and FALSE (and, of course, NULL) are used for code readability, not because the underlying values might ever change. It's a matter of style, not correctness, wheth...
2015-05-11, 1009👍, 0💬

How can I sort a linked list?
How can I sort a linked list? Sometimes it's easier to keep the list in order as you build it (or perhaps to use a tree instead). Algorithms like insertion sort and merge sort lend themselves ideally to use with linked lists. If you want to use a standard library function, you can allocate a tempora...
2015-08-10, 1008👍, 0💬

I have some old code that tries to construct identifiers with a macro like ...
I have some old code that tries to construct identifiers with a macro like #define Paste(a, b) a/**/b but it doesn't work any more. It was an undocumented feature of some early preprocessor implementations (notably Reiser's) that comments disappeared entirely and could therefore be used for token pa...
2016-01-27, 1007👍, 0💬

How can I return a sequence of random numbers which dont repeat at all?
How can I return a sequence of random numbers which dont repeat at all? What you're looking for is often called a ``random permutation'' or ``shuffle.'' One way is to initialize an array with the values to be shuffled, then randomly interchange each of the cells with another one later in the array: ...
2015-07-24, 1007👍, 0💬

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