Node: Local Labels, Next: , Previous: Statement Exprs, Up: C Extensions

Locally Declared Labels

Each statement expression is a scope in which local labels can be declared. A local label is simply an identifier; you can jump to it with an ordinary goto statement, but only from within the statement expression it belongs to.

A local label declaration looks like this:

     __label__ label;


     __label__ label1, label2, ...;

Local label declarations must come at the beginning of the statement expression, right after the ({, before any ordinary declarations.

The label declaration defines the label name, but does not define the label itself. You must do this in the usual way, with label:, within the statements of the statement expression.

The local label feature is useful because statement expressions are often used in macros. If the macro contains nested loops, a goto can be useful for breaking out of them. However, an ordinary label whose scope is the whole function cannot be used: if the macro can be expanded several times in one function, the label will be multiply defined in that function. A local label avoids this problem. For example:

     #define SEARCH(array, target)                     \
     ({                                                \
       __label__ found;                                \
       typeof (target) _SEARCH_target = (target);      \
       typeof (*(array)) *_SEARCH_array = (array);     \
       int i, j;                                       \
       int value;                                      \
       for (i = 0; i < max; i++)                       \
         for (j = 0; j < max; j++)                     \
           if (_SEARCH_array[i][j] == _SEARCH_target)  \
             { value = i; goto found; }                \
       value = -1;                                     \
      found:                                           \
       value;                                          \