Defect Report #015
Submission Date: 10 Dec 92
Source: X3J11/90-051 (Craig Blitz)
This question concerns the promoted type of plain int
bit-fields with length equal to the size of an object of type int.
I am interested in implementations that have chosen not to regard the
high-order bit as a sign bit.
The question is: What is the promoted type of such an object?
Subclause 126.96.36.199 states:
A bit-field shall have a type that is ... int,
unsigned int, or signed int.
The intent of this, I believe, is that the type of a
plain int bit-field is int.
Subclause 188.8.131.52 states:
A char, a short int,
or an int b it-field, or their signed or unsigned
varieties, ... may be used in an expression wherever an int
or unsigned int may be used. If an int
can represent all values of the original type, the value is converted to
an int; otherwise it is converted to an unsigned
The integral promotions preserve value
Tracing this through, then, the type of any promoted
plain int bit-field is int, since
int can hold all the val ues of the original type,
which is int. However, not all values of the
bit-field, which may be regarded as non-negative, can be represented by
an int. By value-preserving promotion rules, I would
expect the type of the promoted bit-field to be unsigned int.
Can you clarify this?
As described in subclause 184.108.40.206, bit-fields that are being
treated as unsigned will promote according to the same rules as other
unsigned types: if the width is less than int, and
int ca n hold all the values, then the promotion is to
int. Otherwise, promoti on is to unsigned int.
Previous Defect Report
< - > Next Defect Report