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Compiler Warning (level 3) C4996

'function': was declared deprecated also 'std::<function name>': Function call with parameters that may be unsafe - this call relies on the caller to check that the passed values are correct. To disable this warning, use -D_SCL_SECURE_NO_WARNINGS. See documentation on how to use Visual C++ 'Checked Iterators'

This warning/error has many possible meanings.

C4996 may occur because compiler encountered a function that was marked with deprecated. The function may no longer be supported in a future release. You can turn this warning off with the warning pragma (example below).

Some CRT and Standard C++ Library functions have been deprecated in favor of new, more secure functions. For more information on which function to use instead, see the documentation for the deprecated function in the error message. To turn off CRT deprecation warnings, define _CRT_SECURE_NO_WARNINGS. For more information about deprecated functions, see Security Features in the CRT and Safe Libraries: C++ Standard Library.

You will see C4996 if you are using members of the <hash_map> and <hash_set> header files in the std namespace. See The stdext Namespace for more information.

C4996 can also occur if you use MFC or ATL functions that were deprecated for security reasons. To suppress these warnings, see _AFX_SECURE_NO_WARNINGS and _ATL_SECURE_NO_WARNINGS.

C4996 can also occur when you use the marshaling library. In this case C4996 is an error, not a warning. This error will occur when you use marshal_as to convert between two data types that require a marshal_context Class. You will also receive this error when the marshaling library does not support a conversion. For more information about the marshaling library, see Overview of Marshaling in C++.

In the first example, C4996 is generated for the line on which the function is declared and for the line on which the function is used.

The following sample generates C4996.

// C4996.cpp
// compile with: /W3
// C4996 warning expected
#include <stdio.h>

// #pragma warning(disable : 4996)
void func1(void) {
   printf_s("\nIn func1");
}

__declspec(deprecated) void func1(int) {
   printf_s("\nIn func2");
}

int main() {
   func1();
   func1(1);
}

C4996 can also occur if you do not use a checked iterator when compiling with _ITERATOR_DEBUG_LEVEL defined (set to 1 by default for debug mode builds). See Checked Iterators for more information.

The following STL code example generates C4996.

// C4996_b.cpp
// compile with: /EHsc /W3 /c
#define _ITERATOR_DEBUG_LEVEL 1

#include <algorithm>
#include <iterator>

using namespace std;
using namespace stdext;

int main() {
    int a[] = { 1, 2, 3 };
    int b[] = { 10, 11, 12 };
    copy(a, a + 3, b + 1);   // C4996
    // try the following line instead
    //   copy(a, a + 3, b);
    copy(a, a + 3, checked_array_iterator<int *>(b, 3));   // OK
}

The following STL code example generates C4996 as a warning. Comments are inline.

#include <algorithm>
#include <array>
#include <iostream>
#include <iterator>
#include <numeric>
#include <string>
#include <vector>

using namespace std;

template <typename C> void print(const string& s, const C& c) {
    cout << s;

    for (const auto& e : c) {
        cout << e << " ";
    }

    cout << endl;
}

int main()
{
    vector<int> v(16);
    iota(v.begin(), v.end(), 0);
    print("v: ", v);

    // OK: vector::iterator is checked in debug mode
    // (i.e. an overrun will trigger a debug assertion)
    vector<int> v2(16);
    transform(v.begin(), v.end(), v2.begin(), [](int n) { return n * 2; });
    print("v2: ", v2);

    // OK: back_insert_iterator is marked as checked in debug mode
    // (i.e. an overrun is impossible)
    vector<int> v3;
    transform(v.begin(), v.end(), back_inserter(v3), [](int n) { return n * 3; });
    print("v3: ", v3);

    // OK: array::iterator is checked in debug mode
    // (i.e. an overrun will trigger a debug assertion)
    array<int, 16> a4;
    transform(v.begin(), v.end(), a4.begin(), [](int n) { return n * 4; });
    print("a4: ", a4);

    // OK: Raw arrays are checked in debug mode
    // (i.e. an overrun will trigger a debug assertion)
    // NOTE: This applies only when raw arrays are given to STL algorithms!
    int a5[16];
    transform(v.begin(), v.end(), a5, [](int n) { return n * 5; });
    print("a5: ", a5);

    // WARNING C4996: Pointers cannot be checked in debug mode
    // (i.e. an overrun will trigger undefined behavior)
    int a6[16];
    int * p6 = a6;
    transform(v.begin(), v.end(), p6, [](int n) { return n * 6; });
    print("a6: ", a6);

    // OK: stdext::checked_array_iterator is checked in debug mode
    // (i.e. an overrun will trigger a debug assertion)
    int a7[16];
    int * p7 = a7;
    transform(v.begin(), v.end(), stdext::make_checked_array_iterator(p7, 16), [](int n) { return n * 7; });
    print("a7: ", a7);

    // WARNING SILENCED: stdext::unchecked_array_iterator is marked as checked in debug mode
    // (i.e. it performs no checking, so an overrun will trigger undefined behavior)
    int a8[16];
    int * p8 = a8;
    transform(v.begin(), v.end(), stdext::make_unchecked_array_iterator(p8), [](int n) { return n * 8; });
    print("a8: ", a8);
}

The following sample generates C4996 because the marshaling library requires a context to convert from a System::String to a const char *.

// C4996_Marshal.cpp
// compile with: /clr 
// C4996 expected
#include <stdlib.h>
#include <string.h>
#include <msclr\marshal.h>

using namespace System;
using namespace msclr::interop;

int main() {
   String^ message = gcnew String("Test String to Marshal");
   const char* result;
   result = marshal_as<const char*>( message );
   return 0;
}
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