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Writing Code That Works with 32- and 64-bit Compilers

strlen, etc.

The return type of string length functions like strlen and wcslen is a size_t. Since we will never have null terminated strings with more than 2,147,483,647 characters, simply use a cast like so:

 int length = (int)wcslen(str);  (int) cast for 64 bit compilers

fread and fwrite

The return type of fread and fwrite is a size_t. Design your calls to fread and fwrite so that the count argument is never > 2,147,483,648 and use an int cast on the return type like:

 int count = ...;  some number <= 2,147,483,648
 if ( count != (int)fread( buffer, size, count, fp ) )
    fread failed
   handle file reading error
 int count = ...;  some number <= 2,147,483,648
 if ( count != (int)fwrite( buffer, size, count, fp ) )
    fwrite failed
   handle file writing error

If you are compelled to write 9,223,372,036,854,775,808 bytes in a single call to fwrite, you can do so with:

 size_t size = 9223372036854775808;
 void* buffer = ...;
 FILE* fp = ...;
 if ( 1 != fwrite( buffer, size, 1, fp ) )
    failed to write 9223 terrabytes in a single call to fwrite - duh
   printf("You're a looser\n");

Sort functions that compare pointers

Use INT_PTR to store the difference between two pointers.

  Sort functions have to return 32 bit ints
 static int compar( const void** a, const void** b )
    pointer differences have to be INT_PTR (64 bit int on x64)
   INT_PTR i = ((const CTheRealType**)b)->pRhinoObject - ((const CTheRealType**)a)->pRhinoObject
    Expect i to be > MAX_INT, so do something like this
   return ( (i<0) ? -1 : ( (i>0) ? 1 : 0 );


The type size_t is 64 bits on a 64-bit compiler. See the strlen and fread sections for examples on dealing with this.

Formatted printing (printf, RhinoApp().Print(), ON_wString::Format, etc.)

You really need to pay attention to the size of your integer arguments to formatted printing strings.

 int i = ...;
 size_t sz = ...;
 void* ptr = ...;
 INT_PTR ip = ...;
 hyper h = ...;
 __int64 i64 = ...;
 RhinoApp().Print("i = %d  sz = %Id ptr = %I08X ip = %Id h = %I64d i64 = %I64d\n",

Windows SendMessage

If you cast the WPARAM and LPARAM arguments as (WPARAM) and (LPARAM), and put the return value in an LRESULT, everything works perfectly for both the 32- and 64-bit compilers. Since the value of smresult can be an int, pointer, handle, whatever, cast smresult as shown below.

 LRESULT smresult = SendMessage((UNIT)id, (WPARAM)&gt, (LPARAM)sText);
 int rc = (int)smresult ;  In this case, I the rest of the code want
 HWND hwnd = (HWND)smresult;
 char** ptr = (char**)smresult;

Windows SetWindowLong and GetWindowLong

Replace every single instance of windows calls that pass pointers as mystery meat with the new Ptr versions.

    BAD                GOOD
  SetWindowLong -> SetWindowLongPtr
  GetWindowLong -> GetWindowLongPtr

If you do this, then your code will work perfectly and compile cleanly on both 32- and 64-bit platforms.

The Ptr part of the function names is misleading. The Ptr versions work when the return value or last argument has any type.


 SetWindowLong( *pDockFrame, GWL_USERDATA, (LONG)this);
 WNDPROC wp = (WNDPROC)::GetWindowLong( *pDockFrame, GWL_WNDPROC);
 DWORD dwStyle = ::GetWindowLong( pMsg->hwnd, GWL_STYLE)


 SetWindowLongPtr( hwnd, id, (LONG_PTR)this);
 WNDPROC wp = (WNDPROC)::GetWindowLongPtr( *pDockFrame, GWL_WNDPROC);
 DWORD dwStyle = (DWORD)::GetWindowLongPtr( pMsg->hwnd, GWL_STYLE)


The value returned by Windows ::SetTimer() needs to be saved in a UINT_PTR.

developer/sdksamples/migratevs2010/64bitcompatibility.txt ยท Last modified: 2016/04/11 by sandy