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Pointers Basics
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 Rating: 3      Rate this article   33 
 15 Apr 2011

Pointers Basics


Pointers are variables that hold the addresses of other variables. A simple example is if variable x contains the address of y, then xis said to point to y. Once a pointer points to a variable, the value of the variable can be changed or retrieved through the pointer. Operations carried out through pointers are sometimes referred to as indirection. The general form that a pointer variable declaration takes is:

 type* varname

Here typeis the pointer’s base type, which must be a nonreference type, which means that you can’t declare a pointer to a class object. Note that *must follow the type name. Also, varnameis the name of the pointer variable. To declare a variable var1 to be a pointer to an int, the following declaration is used: int* var1;

A declaration statement, following a type name with a *, creates a pointer type. In C#, the *is distributive and is the declaration. The following declaration declares two variables:

int* var1, var2;

Void Pointers

If you want to declare a pointer but not specify a type for it, it needs to be declared as a void pointer.

void *var1;

Pointer Operators

Let’s take a look at two operators used with pointers — the &and *operators. &is a unary operator used to return the memory address for the operand:

int* var1;

int num = 7;

var1 = #


In this example, var1contains the memory address for the variable num. This address will be the location of the variable in the computer’s memory. It’s important to note that this variable has nothing at all to do with the value of the variable num. The operations carried out by &can be thought of as returning the memory address of the operand. The *operator is the compliment of the &operator. It is a unary operator that refers to the value of the variable located at the address specified by the operand.

int var2 = *num;

Here the value of numis placed into the variable var2. *can also be used on the left side of the assignment:

*num = 7:


Here the value 7is put into the address for num.

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11.07.2012    pretty

Heh, it's good to see that you're continuing the trend of asikng "trick" questions in certification, which has to be the dumbest thing I've ever heard. Many MySQL folks complained loudly about the trick questions when they first appeared, but no one

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 Tags: pointers, Pointer Operators, memory, int*
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