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Calls abort or a function you specify using set_terminate.

void terminate( void );


The terminate function is used with C++ exception handling and is called in the following cases:

  • A matching catch handler cannot be found for a thrown C++ exception.
  • An exception is thrown by a destructor function during stack unwind.
  • The stack is corrupted after throwing an exception.

terminate calls abort by default. You can change this default by writing your own termination function and calling set_terminate with the name of your function as its argument. terminate calls the last function given as an argument to set_terminate. For more information, see Unhandled C++ Exceptions.


Routine Required header Compatibility
terminate <eh.h> ANSI, Win 98, Win Me, Win NT, Win 2000, Win XP

For additional compatibility information, see Compatibility in the Introduction.


All versions of the C run-time libraries.


// crt_terminate.cpp
// compile with: /EHsc
#include <eh.h>
#include <process.h>
#include <iostream>
using namespace std;

void term_func();

int main()
    int i = 10, j = 0, result;
    set_terminate( term_func );
        if( j == 0 )
            throw "Divide by zero!";
            result = i/j;
    catch( int )
        cout << "Caught some integer exception.\n";
    cout << "This should never print.\n";

void term_func()
    cout << "term_func() was called by terminate().\n";

    // ... cleanup tasks performed here

    // If this function does not exit, abort is called.



term_func() was called by terminate().

See Also

Exception Handling Routines | abort | _set_se_translator | set_terminate | set_unexpected | unexpected | Run-Time Routines and .NET Framework Equivalents