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Enum

2 June, 2020   ·   Rust

enum is a type that can be any one of several variants.

Enum Example

enum IPAddrKind {
    V4,
    V6,
}

Enum Values

Enum values can be accessed using :: which is useful. Reason is, each value inside that given enum is of same type. For example:

enum IPAddrKind {
    V4,
    V6,
}

fn main() {
    let version_four = IPAddrKind::V4;
    let version_six = IPAddrKind::V6;

    // following are valid
    route(IPAddrKind::V4);
    route(IPAddrKind::V6);
}

// `ip_kind` would accept both `V4` and `v6`
fn route(ip_kind: IPAddrKind) -> bool {
    true
}

Attaching data

enum IPAddrKind {
    V4(String),
    V6(String),
}

fn main() {
    let home = IPAddrKind::V4(String::from("127.0.0.1"));
    let loopback = IPAddrKind::V6(String::from("::1"));
}

An enum could hold any kind of data; be it a struct, integers, string, or even another enum etc etc. For example:

struct IPv4Addr {
    addr: String,
}

struct IPv6Addr {
    addr: String,
}

enum IPAddr {
    V4(IPv4Addr),
    V6(IPv6Addr),
}

The advantage of defining enum over struct is that all data that it would be holding, will be under a same namespace. This would make passing them as function argument easier.

The Option enum

Rust does not have null, because they believe that it would probably bring some unintentional errors to the code.

Rust handles the concept of whether a value is present or absent in a diiferent way. Option enum is a predefined enum which have two variants: Some and None. Some can hold any kind of data. And None would hold nothing, obviously.

enum Option<T> {
    Some(T),
    None,
}

The <T> syntax is a generic type parameter. This means the Some variant of Option can hold one piece of data of any type.

enum Option is included in prelude. One does not have to explicitly bring it in scope. Even the variants of Option are directly available for use.

Example:

let some_number = Some(5);
let some_str = Some("Hello");

let absent_number: Option<i32> = None;

It is important to mention data type when using None. Compiler can’t extract the type from None variant to assign it to Some.

Note that the Option<T> and T(where T holds a value of any type) are not same. That’s because, let’s say, we stored a i32 value in T and assigned it to a variable. Now what compiler unserstands is i32 is a premitive data type, whereas Option<i32> is of type Option. Doing any operation between i32 and Option<i32> would result in an error.

This prevents programmer from making errors by assuming a value is not null when it actually is. In order to perform any ops with Option<i32>, one must convert it to type i32. There are utility methods like is_some, is_none, clone are available under Option enum which could be used to carry out conversions.

 enum
Structures: Method Syntax↠ ↞Match Control flow