Defining Class memeber functions

This is a discussion on Defining Class memeber functions within the C++ Programming forums, part of the General Programming Boards category; If a class member function is declared in the class definition this means that the client program can see the ...

  1. #1
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    Defining Class memeber functions

    If a class member function is declared in the class definition this means that the client program can see the implementation of the function? This is what the book I have says but I don't quite understand what it means. When I think of implemenation I think source code. What makes defining a function in the class header any different than declaring a prototype and defining the function outside of the class?
    silk.odyssey

  2. #2
    erstwhile
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    Defining a function within a class body is implicitly stating that the function is inline. Although you can define inline functions outside of the class declaration (but still in the same header file) you'd have to use the inline keyword explicitly. So the implementation is available to anyone with that header file.

    If you split definition and declaration between source and header files you could build an object/library containing the source code implementation and then distribute your lib/header pair for use by others. In this case the implementation would be hidden within the lib although the user could (necessarily) see the class declaration(s) from the header file.
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  3. #3
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    Thanks ken, I think I have a better understanding now.
    silk.odyssey

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