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Section: 23.4.3 [iterator.operations], 184.108.40.206 [range.iter.op.advance] Status: New Submitter: Casey Carter Opened: 2019-11-22 Last modified: 2019-12-07
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ranges::advance (220.127.116.11 [range.iter.op.advance]) and std::advance (23.4.3 [iterator.operations]) can be called with a negative count n when the iterator argument i models bidirectional_iterator (respectively, meets the Cpp17BidirectionalIterator requirements). In this case, they are specified to "decrement i by -n". If n is the most-negative value of a signed integral type, the expression -n has undefined behavior. This UB is unfortunate given that typical implementations never actually form the expression -n. It's nonsensical to describe the effects of a function in terms of an expression with undefined behavior, so we should either define the behavior or exclude this case via precondition.ranges::prev() and std::prev (23.4.3 [iterator.operations]) have a similar problem: prev(i, n) is equivalent to:
advance(i, -n); return i;
which has undefined behavior when n is numeric_limits<T>::min() where T is iter_difference_t<decltype(i)> (for ranges::prev) or some signed integral type (for std::prev). There is an implicit precondition here thanks to "Effects: Equivalent to" since the equivalent code has a precondition that n is not a most-negative value, so this wording is not defective. We could, however, define behavior for prev regardless of the value of n by duplicating the specification of advance and inverting the "direction" of the operations. We should consider doing so.
[2019-12-07 Issue Prioritization]
Priority to 3 after reflector discussion.
This wording is relative to N4835.
[Drafting note: I've chosen to provide wording for the conservative "define behavior for advance and leave prev as status quo" middle ground.The occurrences of "|" in the below are math-font vertical bars (indicating absolute value). I've changed both positive and negative cases for consistency of presentation. ]
Modify 23.4.3 [iterator.operations] as indicated:
template<class InputIterator, class Distance> constexpr void advance(InputIterator& i, Distance n);
-2- Expects: n is negative only for bidirectional iterators.-3- Effects: Increments i by n if n is non-negative, and decrements i by
Modify 18.104.22.168 [range.iter.op.advance] as indicated:
template<input_or_output_iterator I> constexpr void ranges::advance(I& i, iter_difference_t<I> n);[…]
-1- Expects: If I does not model bidirectional_iterator, n is not negative.-2- Effects:
(2.1) — If I models random_access_iterator, equivalent to i += n.
(2.2) — Otherwise, if n is non-negative, increments i by n.
(2.3) — Otherwise, decrements i by
-n.template<input_or_output_iterator I, sentinel_for<I> S> constexpr iter_difference_t<I> ranges::advance(I& i, iter_difference_t<I> n, S bound);
-5- Expects: […]-6- Effects:
(6.1) — If S and I model sized_sentinel_for<S, I>:
(6.1.1) — If |n| ≥ |bound - i|, equivalent to ranges::advance(i, bound).:
(6.1.2) — Otherwise, equivalent to ranges::advance(i, n).
(6.2) — Otherwise,
(6.2.1) — if n is non-negative, while bool(i != bound) is true, increments i but at most n times.:
(6.2.2) — Otherwise, while bool(i != bound) is true, decrements i but at most