Effective C++ 55 Specific Ways to Improve Your Programs and Designs

  • ISBN13:


  • ISBN10:


  • Edition: 3rd
  • Format: Paperback
  • Copyright: 2005-05-12
  • Publisher: Addison-Wesley Professional
  • Purchase Benefits
  • Free Shipping On Orders Over $35!
    Your order must be $35 or more to qualify for free economy shipping. Bulk sales, PO's, Marketplace items, eBooks and apparel do not qualify for this offer.
  • Get Rewarded for Ordering Your Textbooks! Enroll Now
List Price: $54.99 Save up to $8.25
  • Buy New
    Add to Cart Free Shipping


Supplemental Materials

What is included with this book?

  • The New copy of this book will include any supplemental materials advertised. Please check the title of the book to determine if it should include any access cards, study guides, lab manuals, CDs, etc.
  • The eBook copy of this book is not guaranteed to include any supplemental materials. Typically, only the book itself is included. This is true even if the title states it includes any access cards, study guides, lab manuals, CDs, etc.


"Every C++ professional needs a copy of Effective C++. It is an absolute must-read for anyone thinking of doing serious C++ development. If you've never read Effective C++ and you think you know everything about C++, think again." - Steve Schirripa, Software Engineer, Google "C++ and the C++ community have grown up in the last fifteen years, and the third edition of Effective C++ reflects this. The clear and precise style of the book is evidence of Scott's deep insight and distinctive ability to impart knowledge." - Gerhard Kreuzer, Research and Development Engineer, Siemens AG The first two editions of Effective C++ were embraced by hundreds of thousands of programmers worldwide. The reason is clear: Scott Meyers' practical approach to C++ describes the rules of thumb used by the experts - the things they almost always do or almost always avoid doing - to produce clear, correct, efficient code.The book is organized around 55 specific guidelines, each of which describes a way to write better C++. Each is backed by concrete examples. For this third edition, more than half the content is new, including added chapters on managing resources and using templates. Topics from the second edition have been extensively revised to reflect modern design considerations, including exceptions, design patterns, and multithreading.Important features of Effective C++ include: Expert guidance on the design of effective classes, functions, templates, and inheritance hierarchies. Applications of new "TR1" standard library functionality, along with comparisons to existing standard library components. Insights into differences between C++ and other languages (e.g., Java, C#, C) that help developers from those languages assimilate "the C++ way" of doing things.

Author Biography

Scott Meyers is one of the world's foremost authorities on C++, providing training and consulting services to clients worldwide. He is the author of the best-selling Effective C++ series of books (Effective C++, More Effective C++, and Effective STL) and of the innovative Effective C++ CD. He is consulting editor for Addison Wesley's Effective Software Development Series and is a founding member of the Advisory Board for The C++ Source (http://www.artima.com/cppsource). He holds a Ph.D. in Computer Science from Brown University. His web site is http://www.aristeia.com.

Table of Contents

Preface xv
Acknowledgments xvii
Introduction 1(10)
Accustoming Yourself to C++
View C++ as a federation of languages
Prefer consts, enums, and inlines to #defines
Use const whenever possible
Make sure that objects are initialized before they're used
Constructors, Destructors, and Assignment Operators
Know what functions C++ silently writes and calls
Explicitly disallow the use of compiler-generated functions you do not want
Declare destructors virtual in polymorphic base classes
Prevent exceptions from leaving destructors
Never call virtual functions during construction or destruction
Have assignment operators return a reference to *this
Handle assignment to self in operator=
Copy all parts of an object
Resource Management
Use objects to manage resources
Think carefully about copying behavior in resource-managing classes
Provide access to raw resources in resource-managing classes
Use the same form in corresponding uses of new and delete
Store newed objects in smart pointers in standalone statements
Designs and Declarations
Make interfaces easy to use correctly and hard to use incorrectly
Treat class design as type design
Prefer pass-by-reference-to-const to pass-by-value
Don't try to return a reference when you must return an object
Declare data members private
Prefer non-member non-friend functions to member functions
Declare non-member functions when type conversions should apply to all parameters
Consider support for a non-throwing swap
Postpone variable definitions as long as possible
Minimize casting
Avoid returning ``handles'' to object internals
Strive for exception-safe code
Understand the ins and outs of inlining
Minimize compilation dependencies between files
Inheritance and Object-Oriented Design
Make sure public inheritance models ``is-a.''
Avoid hiding inherited names
Differentiate between inheritance of interface and inheritance of implementation
Consider alternatives to virtual functions
Never redefine an inherited non-virtual function
Never redefine a function's inherited default parameter value
Model ``has-a'' or ``is-implemented-in-terms-of'' through composition
Use private inheritance judiciously
Use multiple inheritance judiciously
Templates and Generic Programming
Understand implicit interfaces and compile-time polymorphism
Understand the two meanings of typename
Know how to access names in templatized base classes
Factor parameter-independent code out of templates
Use member function templates to accept ``all compatible types.''
Define non-member functions inside templates when type conversions are desired
Use traits classes for information about types
Be aware of template metaprogramming
Customizing new and delete
Understand the behavior of the new-handler
Understand when it makes sense to replace new and delete
Adhere to convention when writing new and delete
Write placement delete if you write placement new
Pay attention to compiler warnings
Familiarize yourself with the standard library, including TR1
Familiarize yourself with Boost
Appendix A: Beyond Effective C++ 273(4)
Appendix B: Item Mappings Between Second and Third Editions 277(3)
Index 280


I wrote the original edition ofEffective C++in 1991. When the time came for a second edition in 1997, I updated the material in important ways, but, because I didn't want to confuse readers familiar with the first edition, I did my best to retain the existing structure: 48 of the original 50 Item titles remained essentially unchanged. If the book were a house, the second edition was the equivalent of freshening things up by replacing carpets, paint, and light fixtures. For the third edition, I tore the place down to the studs. (There were times I wished I'd gone all the way to the foundation.) The world of C++ has undergone enormous change since 1991, and the goal of this book to identify the most important C++ programming guidelines in a small, readable package was no longer served by the Items I'd established nearly 15 years earlier. In 1991, it was reasonable to assume that C++ programmers came from a C background. Now, programmers moving to C++ are just as likely to come from Java or C#. In 1991, inheritance and object-oriented programming were new to most programmers. Now they're well-established concepts, and exceptions, templates, and generic programming are the areas where people need more guidance. In 1991, nobody had heard of design patterns. Now it's hard to discuss software systems without referring to them. In 1991, work had just begun on a formal standard for C++. Now that standard is eight years old, and work has begun on the next version. To address these changes, I wiped the slate as clean as I could and asked myself, "What are the most important pieces of advice for practicing C++ programmers in 2005?" The result is the set of Items in this new edition. The book has new chapters on resource management and on programming with templates. In fact, template concerns are woven throughout the text, because they affect almost everything in C++. The book also includes new material on programming in the presence of exceptions, on applying design patterns, and on using the new TR1 library facilities. (TR1 is described in Item54.) It acknowledges that techniques and approaches that work well in single-threaded systems may not be appropriate in multithreaded systems. Well over half the material in the book is new. However, most of the fundamental information in the second edition continues to be important, so I found a way to retain it in one form or another. (You'll find a mapping between the second and third edition Items in Appendix B.) I've worked hard to make this book as good as I can, but I have no illusions that it's perfect. If you feel that some of the Items in this book are inappropriate as general advice; that there is a better way to accomplish a task examined in the book; or that one or more of the technical discussions is unclear, incomplete, or misleading, please tell me. If you find an error of any kind technical, grammatical, typographical,whatever please tell me that, too. I'll gladly add to the acknowledgments in later printings the name of the first person to bring each problem to my attention. Even with the number of Items expanded to 55, the set of guidelines in this book is far from exhaustive. But coming up with good rules ones that apply to almost all applications almost all the time is harder than it might seem. If you have suggestions for additional guidelines, I would be delighted to hear about them. I maintain a list of changes to this book since its first printing, including bug fixes, clarifications, and technical updates. The list is available at theEffective C++ Errataweb page, http://aristeia.com/BookErrata/ec++3e-errata.html . If you&am

Rewards Program

Write a Review