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Tip of the Day
Language: Visual Basic
Expertise: Beginner
Jan 5, 2002

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Return Empty Arrays Too


With VB6 came the ability to return arrays from functions. Returning an uninitialized array is a problem because there is no easy way—other than error-trapping—to find whether an array has been dimensioned. Also, ReDim myArr(-1) does not work. You can use the Split function to return an empty array—one with no elements and no data&$151;and an LBound of 0 and an UBound of -1. This practice simplifies code for looping through the returned array:
 
Private Function Foo(args...) As String()
Dim myArr() As String
' Initialize array dimensions as 0 to -1
myArr = Split("")
If Condition Then
ReDim myArr(n)
' further processing...
End If
Foo = myArr
End Function

Here, no additional checking is required to use Foo. But omitting the call to Split can lead to a "Subscript out of range" error in a routine that attempts to use Foo
Anand Likhite
 
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