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Tip of the Day
Language: C++
Expertise: All
May 15, 2000

How Many Member Functions Can a Class Contain?

The C++ standard doesn't specify the maximal number of member functions that a class can have. However, it recommends that it be 4096. Normally, classes don't have more than 15-25 member functions so you never care about this upper limit. However, people who migrate from C to C++ sometimes group a bunch of legacy C functions under a single class. In a recently posted message on one of the C++ newsgroups, a reader complained that his compiler crashed because he tried to compile a class with 2500 (!) member functions in it. Seemingly, this number doesn't exceed the upper limit recommended in the C++ standard. The problem, however, is that debuggers need to store debugging information on every class member. When the number of members is so high, the compiler crashes.
Danny Kalev
 
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