tructures Declarations

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					Department of Computer and Information Science, School of Science, IUPUI

CSCI 230

Structures Declarations
Dale Roberts, Lecturer Computer Science, IUPUI E-mail:

Dale Roberts

A collection of one or more variables, possibly of different types, grouped together under a single name for convenient handling. Commonly used to define records to be stored in files Combined with pointers, can create linked lists, stacks, queues, and trees
struct card { char *face; char *suit; };

struct introduces the definition for structure card card is the structure name and is used to declare variables of the structure type card contains two members of type char * These members are face and suit
Dale Roberts

Structure Definitions
A date consists of several parts, such as the day, month, and year, and the day of the year, and the month name

struct date {

int day; int month; int year; int year_date; char month_name[4]; };

date: the name of the structure, called structure tag. day, month, …: the elements or variables mentioned in a structure are called members.

struct information
A struct cannot contain an instance of itself Can contain a member that is a pointer to the same structure type A structure definition does not reserve space in memory
Instead creates a new data type used to declare structure variables

Dale Roberts

Declaration of Variables of Structure
method 1: declared like other variables: declare tag first, and then declare variable.
struct card { char *face; char *suit; }; struct card oneCard, deck[ 52 ], *cPtr;
struct date { .. .. .. }; struct date d1, d2, d3, d4, d5;

method 2: A list of variables can be declared after the right brace and use comma separated list:
struct card { char *face; char *suit; } oneCard, deck[ 52 ], *cPtr; struct date { .. .. .. } d1, d2, d3; struct date d4, d5;

method 3: Declare only variables.
struct { char *face; char *suit; } oneCard, deck[ 52 ], *cPtr;

struct { .. .. .. } d1, d2, d3, d4, d5;

Dale Roberts

Structure Definitions
Valid Operations
Assigning a structure to a structure of the same type Taking the address (&) of a structure Accessing the members of a structure Using the sizeof operator to determine the size of a structure

Initialization of Structures
Initializer lists
Example: struct card oneCard = { "Three", "Hearts" };
struct date d1 = {4, 7, 1776, 186, “Jul”}; struct date d2 = {4, 7, 1776, 186, {„J‟,‟u‟,‟l‟,‟\0‟}};

Assignment statements
Example: struct card threeHearts = oneCard;

Dale Roberts

Accessing Members of Structures
Accessing structure members
Dot (.) is a member operator used with structure variables
Syntax: structure_name.member struct card myCard; printf( "%s", myCard.suit ); One could also declare and initialize threeHearts as follows: struct card threeHearts; threeHearts.face = “Three”; threeHearts.suit = “Hearts”;

Arrow operator (->) used with pointers to structure variables
struct card *myCardPtr = &myCard; printf( "%s", myCardPtr->suit ); myCardPtr->suit is equivalent to (*myCardPtr).suit
Dale Roberts

Structure can be nested
struct date { int day; int month; int year; int year_date; char month_name[4]; };

• Name Rule
• Members in different structure can have the same name, since they are at different position.
struct s1 { .. .. .. .. char name[10]; .. .. .. .. } d1;

struct person { char name [NAME_LEN]; char address[ADDR_LEN}; long zipcode; long ss__number; double salary;

struct date birthday;

struct s2 { .. .. .. .. int name; .. .. .. .. } d2;
struct s3 { .. .. .. .. int name; struct s2 t3; .. .. .. .. } d3; float name;

struct person emp;

emp.birthday.month = 6; emp.birthday.year = 1776;

Dale Roberts

Memory Layout
struct data1 { int day1; char month[9]; int year; };
0 1 2 - 10 11

Word (2 bytes) alignment machine – begins (aligns) at even address, such as PC, SUN workstation
day1 int month char array (hole) year int 2 9 1 2 bytes bytes bytes bytes

integer 9 character
(hole) integer


Quad (4 bytes) address alignment – begins (aligns) at quad address, such as VAX 8200
day1 int month char array (hole) year int 4 9 3 4 bytes bytes bytes bytes

0-3 4 - 12

integer 9 character

13 - 15


You must take care of hole, if you want to access data from very low level (i.e. low-level I/O, byte operations, etc.)

Dale Roberts

sizeof Operator
sizeof(struct tag)
struct test { char name[5]; int i; char s; } t1, t2; /* assume int is 2 bytes */

main() { printf(“sizeof(struct test) = %d\n”, sizeof (struct test)); printf(“address of t1 = %d\n”, &t1); printf(“address of t2 = %d\n”, &t2); printf(“address of = %d\n”,; t1 992 5 bytes printf(“address of t1.i = %d\n”, &t1.i); 1 byte (hole) 997 printf(“address of t1.s = %d\n”, &t1.s); 2 bytes } 998

sizeof(struct test) = 10 address of t1 = 992 address of t2 = 1002 address of = 992 address of t1.i = 998 address of t1.s = 1000


1000 1001 1002

1 byte

1 byte (hole)
5 bytes 1 byte (hole)

2 bytes
1 byte

1 byte (hole)

Dale Roberts

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