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getline Template Function

Extract strings from the input stream line-by-line.

// (1) delimiter as parameter
template<class CharType, class Traits, class Allocator>
basic_istream<CharType, Traits>& getline(
    basic_istream<CharType, Traits>& is,
    basic_string<CharType, Traits, Allocator>& str, CharType delim);

template<class CharType, class Traits, class Allocator>
basic_istream<CharType, Traits>& getline(
    basic_istream<CharType, Traits>&& is,
    basic_string<CharType, Traits, Allocator>& str, const CharType delim);

// (2) default delimiter used
template<class CharType, class Traits, class Allocator>
basic_istream<CharType, Traits>& getline(
    basic_istream<CharType, Traits>& is,
    basic_string<CharType, Traits, Allocator>& str);

template<class Allocator, class Traits, class Allocator>
basic_istream<Allocator, Traits>& getline(
    basic_istream<Allocator, Traits>&& is,
    basic_string<Allocator, Traits, Allocator>& str);

is

The input stream from which a string is to be extracted.

str

The string into which are read the characters from the input stream.

delim

The line delimiter.

The input stream is.

The pair of function signatures marked (1) extract characters from is until delim is found, storing them in str.

The pair of function signatures marked (2) use newline as the default line delimiter and behave as getline(is, str, is.widen('\n')).

The second function of each pair is an analog to the first one to support rvalue references.

Extraction stops when one of the following occurs:

  • At end-of-file, in which case the internal state flag of is is set to ios_base::eofbit.

  • After the function extracts an element that compares equal to delim, in which case the element is neither put back nor appended to the controlled sequence.

  • After the function extracts str.max_size elements, in which case the internal state flag of is is set to ios_base::failbit.

  • Some other error other than those previously listed, in which case the internal state flag of is is set to ios_base::badbit

For information about internal state flags, see ios_base::iostate.

If the function extracts no elements, the internal state flag of is is set to ios_base::failbit. In any case, getline returns is.

If an exception is thrown, is and str are left in a valid state.

The following code demonstrates getline() in two modes: first with the default delimiter (newline) and second with a whitespace as delimiter. The end-of-file character (CTRL-Z on the keyboard) is used to control termination of the while loops. This sets the internal state flag of cin to eofbit, which must be cleared with basic_ios::clear() before the second while loop will work properly.

// compile with: /EHsc /W4
#include <string>
#include <iostream>
#include <vector>

using namespace std;

int main()
{
    string str;
    vector<string> v1;
    cout << "Enter a sentence, press ENTER between sentences. (Ctrl-Z to stop): " << endl;
    // Loop until end-of-file (Ctrl-Z) is input, store each sentence in a vector.
    // Default delimiter is the newline character.
    while (getline(cin, str)) {
        v1.push_back(str);
    }

    cout << "The following input was stored with newline delimiter:" << endl;
    for (const auto& p : v1) {
        cout << p << endl;
    }

    cin.clear();

    vector<string> v2;
    // Now try it with a whitespace delimiter
    while (getline(cin, str, ' ')) {
        v2.push_back(str);
    }

    cout << "The following input was stored with whitespace as delimiter:" << endl;
    for (const auto& p : v2) {
        cout << p << endl;
    }
}

Enter a sentence, press ENTER between sentences. (Ctrl-Z to stop):
This is test one.
New line.
^Z
The following input was stored with newline delimiter:
This is test one.
New line.
This is test two.
New line.
^Z
The following input was stored with whitespace as delimiter:
This
is
test
two.
New
line.

Header: <string>

Namespace: std

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