Complying with standard C

Conversion functions

ANSI C provides five library functions that manage multibyte characters and wide characters:

mblen() length of next multibyte character
mbtowc() convert multibyte character to wide character
wctomb() convert wide character to multibyte character
mbstowcs() convert multibyte character string to wide character string
wcstombs() convert wide character string to multibyte character string
The behavior of all of these functions depends on the current locale.

NOTE: See the setlocale() function in ``Internationalization''.

It is expected that vendors providing compilation systems targeted to this market will supply many more string-like functions to simplify the handling of wide character strings. However, for most application programs, there is no need to convert any multibyte characters to or from wide characters. Programs such as diff, for example, will read in and write out multibyte characters, needing only to check for an exact byte-for-byte match. More complicated programs (such as grep) that use regular expression pattern matching, may need to understand multibyte characters, but only the common set of functions that manages the regular expression needs this knowledge. The program grep itself requires no other special multibyte character handling.

Next topic: C language features
Previous topic: Wide characters

© 2003 Caldera International, Inc. All rights reserved.
SCO OpenServer Release 5.0.7 -- 11 February 2003