C Identifiers

identifiers are names given to C entities, such as variables, functions, structures etc. Identifier are created to give unique name to C entities to identify it during the execution of program.

int roll;
int student_roll;

Rules for writing identifier

An identifier can be composed of letters (both uppercase and lowercase letters), digits and underscore '_' only.

The first letter of identifier should be either a letter or an underscore. But, it is discouraged to start an identifier name with an underscore though it is legal. It is because, identifier that starts with underscore can conflict with system names. In such cases, compiler will complain about it. Some system names that start with underscore are _fileno, _iob, _wfopen etc.

There is no rule for the length of an identifier. However, the first 31 characters of an identifier are discriminated by the compiler. So, the first 31 letters of two identifiers in a program should be different.

Share this article on