Thread: Passing multidimensional arrays to functions

  1. #1
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Dec 2001

    Passing multidimensional arrays to functions

    How can one create a function that will accept arbitrary length multidimensional arrays?


    int foo[3][4];
    int foo2[5][10];
    int foo3[x][y];

    int somefunction(???)
    /*accept input in the form of any array and process accordingly.*/

  2. #2
    int somefunction(int foo[][4]);
    or you can try
    int somefunction(int **foo);
    just to thoroughly test things out

    The compiler must know the size of the second and any subsequent dimensions when using array notation, and pointer notation can get confusing fast.

  3. #3
    Registered User
    Join Date
    Dec 2001
    I've already tried that. When you try

    int somefunction(**foo) and call


    you get an error "can't convert from int [3][4] to int **"

    Conversely, I'm sure the int somefunction(*foo[4]) would work perfectly for arrays with the second dimension being 4, but I'm trying to create a function with arbitrary input. Eg, you could call the same function with a 4x4 array, a 12x30 array, a 2x5 array, etc.

    Thanks for the help though,


  4. #4
    What I was trying to get at before was I don't believe there is a way to pass a multi-dimensional array of any size to a function, the function has to know the lengths of the latter dimensions.

    Though you can have a multi-dimensional array that is the maximum size and pass that to the function, then have another array the same size but only fill what you need and have the rest as NULL. Then you can pass an array of any size to a function and have a good way to process it. This gets to be a problem when the arrays get very large though

    int foo[20][10] = {0}; //gets filled completely
    int bar[20][10] = {0}; //gets filled half-way
    int baz[20][10] = {0}; //only has a few elements

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