The argv-array API allows one to dynamically build and store NULL-terminated lists. An argv-array maintains the invariant that the argv member always points to a non-NULL array, and that the array is always NULL-terminated at the element pointed to by argv[argc]. This makes the result suitable for passing to functions expecting to receive argv from main(), or the run-command API.

The string-list API is similar, but cannot be used for these purposes; instead of storing a straight string pointer, it contains an item structure with a util field that is not compatible with the traditional argv interface.

Each argv_array manages its own memory. Any strings pushed into the array are duplicated, and all memory is freed by argv_array_clear().

Data Structures

struct argv_array

A single array. This should be initialized by assignment from ARGV_ARRAY_INIT, or by calling argv_array_init. The argv member contains the actual array; the argc member contains the number of elements in the array, not including the terminating NULL.



Initialize an array. This is no different than assigning from ARGV_ARRAY_INIT.


Push a copy of a string onto the end of the array.


Push a list of strings onto the end of the array. The arguments should be a list of const char * strings, terminated by a NULL argument.


Format a string and push it onto the end of the array. This is a convenience wrapper combining strbuf_addf and argv_array_push.


Push a null-terminated array of strings onto the end of the array.


Remove the final element from the array. If there are no elements in the array, do nothing.


Free all memory associated with the array and return it to the initial, empty state.


Disconnect the argv member from the argv_array struct and return it. The caller is responsible for freeing the memory used by the array, and by the strings it references. After detaching, the argv_array is in a reinitialized state and can be pushed into again.