Bug 48001

Summary: inconsistent warning within loop always taken and outside the loop
Product: gcc Reporter: jerome.borme
Component: middle-endAssignee: Not yet assigned to anyone <unassigned>
Severity: normal CC: manu
Priority: P3    
Version: 4.5.2   
Target Milestone: ---   
Host: Target:
Build: Known to work:
Known to fail: Last reconfirmed:
Bug Depends on:    
Bug Blocks: 24639    

Description jerome.borme 2011-03-05 20:43:33 UTC
I checked bug meta-bug #24639, also bug #43361 and bug #27589, but I could not b sure this is a duplicate. The 3rd test below is the surprising one.

gcc -c -Wuninitialized test.c

/* 1st test */
int main () {
  int i, x ;
  x++ ;       // printf ("%d", x) ; would give the same result
  return 0 ;
-->  ‘x’ is used uninitialized in this function
This is expected, we should be incrementing x without first initialization. It works the same for x++ and printf x.

/* 2nd test */
#include <stdio.h>
int main () {
  int i, x ;
  for (i = 0 ; i < 10 ; i++) printf ("%d", x) ;
  return 0 ;
--> ‘x’ may be used uninitialized in this function
I think this corresponds to bug #27589. We should not printf x without initializing, but the compiler cannot be sure if we will actually be printed or not before  evaluating the “for” test at runtime.

/* 3rd test */
int main () {
  int i, x ;
  for (i = 0 ; i < 10 ; i++) x++ ;
  return 0 ;
--> No warning at all.
This is surprising:
* Outside a loop, both printf and x++ give the same warning.
* Inside a loop, printf will give a warning, while x++ will not do it.
Comment 1 jerome.borme 2011-03-05 20:46:12 UTC
Added link to meta-
Comment 2 Manuel López-Ibáñez 2011-03-05 21:41:16 UTC
This is because printf has side-effects (printing) but x++ does not have any side-effects (x is unused), therefore, gcc removes x completely in the third testcase. I guess the loop is also removed completely. This is a too artificial testcase, in the sense that we do not care that x is uninitialized because it is never used for anything.

We warn for the first testcase because the mechanism for detecting "is" is different from the mechanism for detecting "may be". The former happens before we remove the unused x, but the latter happens after in order to not warn for dead code.

There is also the problem that GCC cannot detect that loops are taken at least once, which makes it say "maybe" when it should actually be "is".

To be consistent, I would say that GCC shouldn't warn in the first testcase, or should warn as "is used" in the third testcase.
Comment 3 jerome.borme 2011-03-05 22:25:23 UTC
Here is a more complete part of a program where I found the problem. The following code will allocates 3 vectors fx, fy, fz with specific length, then call a function to display the averaged value of the fx, fy and fz, and the averaged value of sqrt (fx^2+fy^2+fz^2). In the even more complete version, maximum and minimum values of fx, fy, fz and sqrt (...) are also computed. After calculation, values are displayed.

The initialization of sum_f has been forgotten, but no warning is issued, although sum_f is used in the loop.

(Actually for some reason when I run this test, sum_f seems to have 0 even if it is not written there, but I believe this is coincidence, because in the real calculation code the displayed value was wrong.)

#include <math.h>
#include <stdio.h>
#include <stdlib.h>
#define SIZE 100

void average (int nmax, double *fx, double *fy, double *fz)  {
  double sum_fx = 0, sum_fy = 0, sum_fz = 0, cur_f = 0, sum_f ;
  long int i ;
  for (i = 0 ; i < nmax ; i++) {
    sum_fx += fx[i] ;
    sum_fy += fy[i] ;
    sum_fz += fz[i] ;
    cur_f  = pow ((fx[i] * fx[i]) + (fy[i] * fy[i]) + (fz[i] * fz[i]), 0.5) ;
    sum_f  += cur_f ;
  printf ("# Average field : %g %g %g %g\n", sum_fx/nmax, sum_fy/nmax, sum_fz/nmax, sum_f/nmax) ;

int main () {
  long int i ;
  double *fx, *fy, *fz ;
  fx = (double *) malloc (SIZE * sizeof (double)) ;
  fy = (double *) malloc (SIZE * sizeof (double)) ;
  fz = (double *) malloc (SIZE * sizeof (double)) ;
  for (i = 0 ; i < SIZE ; i++) {
    fx[i] = 1 ;
    fy[i] = 1 ;
    fz[i] = 1 ;
  average (SIZE, fx, fy, fz) ;
  return 0 ;
Comment 4 Manuel López-Ibáñez 2015-11-26 01:41:15 UTC
(In reply to jerome.borme from comment #3)
> The initialization of sum_f has been forgotten, but no warning is issued,
> although sum_f is used in the loop.

I get in 6.0 even with -O1:

test.c:12:3: error: ‘sum_f’ may be used uninitialized in this function [-Werror=maybe-uninitialized]

so it seems this got fixed somehow. Please reopen if this is not the case.