Why Does Std::Getline() Skip Input After a Formatted Extraction

Why does std::getline() skip input after a formatted extraction?

Why does this happen?

This has little to do with the input you provided yourself but rather with the default behavior std::getline() has. When you provided your input for the age (std::cin >> age), you not only submitted the following characters, but also an implicit newline was appended to the stream when you typed Enter:


A newline is always appended to your input when you select Enter or Return when submitting from a terminal. It is also used in files for moving toward the next line. The newline is left in the buffer after the extraction into age until the next I/O operation where it is either discarded or read. When the flow of control reaches std::getline(), it will see "\nMr. Whiskers" and the newline at the beginning will be discarded, but the input operation will stop immediately. The reason this happens is because the job of std::getline() is to attempt to read characters and stop when it finds a newline. So the rest of your input is left in the buffer unread.



To fix this, one option is to skip over the newline before doing std::getline(). You can do this by calling std::cin.ignore() after the first input operation. It will discard the next character (the newline character) so that it is no longer in the way.

std::cin >> age;
std::getline(std::cin, name);

// Success!


Another way to discard the whitespace is to use the std::ws function which is a manipulator designed to extract and discard leading whitespace from the beginning of an input stream:

std::cin >> age;
std::getline(std::cin >> std::ws, name);

// Success!

The std::cin >> std::ws expression is executed before the std::getline() call (and after the std::cin >> age call) so that the newline character is removed.

The difference is that ignore() discards only 1 character (or N characters when given a parameter), and std::ws continues to ignore whitespace until it finds a non-whitespace character. So if you don't know how much whitespace will precede the next token you should consider using this.

Match the operations

When you run into an issue like this it's usually because you're combining formatted input operations with unformatted input operations. A formatted input operation is when you take input and format it for a certain type. That's what operator>>() is for. Unformatted input operations are anything other than that, like std::getline(), std::cin.read(), std::cin.get(), etc. Those functions don't care about the format of the input and only process raw text.

If you stick to using a single type of formatting then you can avoid this annoying issue:

// Unformatted I/O
std::string age, name;
std::getline(std::cin, age);
std::getline(std::cin, name);


// Formatted I/O
int age;
std::string firstName, lastName;
std::cin >> age >> firstName >> lastName;

If you choose to read everything as strings using the unformatted operations you can convert them into the appropriate types afterwards.

Why is std::getline() skipped? [duplicate]

Duplicate question answered here.

basically, cin>> doesn't remove new lines from the buffer when the user presses enter. getline() mistakes this for user input along with enter.

You can use cin.ignore() to get rid of those extra characters before using getline().

why do two getline() lead to no input?

The fact is getline takes input from buffer if something exists in buffer else it ask the user for value. What actually happens in your code is as soon as you enter value for select which is not greater than 3 it comes out of the loop after with a value you entered for select and the entered (which stands for \n) that you pressed get stored in buffer. So know when you come to getline for user it sees '\n' from the buffer as getline first check in buffer, so it skip the value insertion and buffer gets emptied and now when you come to getline that is used for password it ask the user for password as buffer was empty.

Why do cin and getline exhibit different reading behavior?

reading behavior of cin and getline.

cin does not "read" anything. cin is an input stream. cin is getting read from. getline reads from an input stream. The formatted extraction operator, >>, reads from an input stream. What's doing the reading is >> and std::getline. std::cin does no reading of its own. It's what's being read from.

first cin read up until the "\n". once it hit that "\n", it increments the
cursor to the next position

No it doesn't. The first >> operator reads up until the \n, but does not read it. \n remains unread.

The second >> operator starts reading with the newline character. The >> operator skips all whitespace in the input stream before it extracts the expected value.

The detail that you're missing is that >> skips whitespace (if there is any) before it extracts the value from the input stream, and not after.

Now, it is certainly possible that >> finds no whitespace in the input stream before extracting the formatted value. If >> is tasked with extracting an int, and the input stream has just been opened and it's at the beginning of the file, and the first character in the file is a 1, well, the >> just doesn't skip any whitespace at all.

Finally, std::getline does not skip any whitespace, it just reads from the input stream until it reads a \n (or reaching the end of the input stream).

why loop is skipping input in first iteration? [duplicate]

cin >> T reads to the end of the number and not to the end of the line.

So with the first getline(cin, s); you read the rest of the line after the number.

You can call cin.ignore(std::numeric_limits<std::streamsize>::max(), '\n'); right after the cin >> T; to ignore everything that is left in that line.

A problem with cin after a getline makes my while loop never end at the second iteration in c++ [duplicate]

After this statement



std::cin.ignore( std::numeric_limits<std::streamsize>::max(), '\n' );

You will need to include the header

#include <limits>

why does the getline() function does not work unless I call it twice in the function charmodifier [duplicate]

The problem is that after entering an integer or a character as for example

cout << "episode No." << endl;
cin >> e;
cout << "enter the name of the show:" << endl;

the input buffer contains the new line character '\n' that corresponds to the pressed Enter key.

So the following call of getline reads an empty string until the new line character is encountered.

In such a case before calling getline you need to remove the new line character from the input buffer like for example

#include <limits>


cout << "episode No." << endl;
cin >> e;
cout << "enter the name of the show:" << endl;
std::cin.ignore( std::numeric_limits<std::streamsize>::max(), '\n' );

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