11.5 Suppressing Checks
Checking pragmas give
instructions to an implementation on handling language-defined checks.
gives permission to an implementation to omit certain language-defined
checks, while a pragma
Unsuppress revokes the permission to omit checks.
(or simply, a “check”) is one
of the situations defined by this International Standard that requires
a check to be made at run time to determine whether some condition is
A check fails
when the condition being
checked is False false
causing an exception to be raised.
Discussion: All such checks are defined
under “Dynamic Semantics” in clauses and subclauses throughout
A checking pragma applies to the named check in
a specific region, and applies to all entities in that region. A checking
pragma given in a declarative_part
or immediately within a package_specification
applies from the place of the pragma
to the end of the innermost enclosing declarative region. The region
for a checking pragma given as a configuration pragma is the declarative
region for the entire compilation unit (or units) to which it applies.
If a checking pragma applies to a generic_instantiation generic
instantiation, then the checking
pragma also applies to the entire instance.
If a checking pragma
applies to a call to a subprogram that has a pragma
Inline applied to it, then the checking pragma also applies to the inlined
This means that a Suppress pragma that occurs in
a scope enclosing the declaration of a generic unit but not also enclosing
the declaration of a given instance of that generic unit will not apply
to constructs within the given instance.
gives permission to an implementation to omit the named check (or
every check in the case of All_Checks) for any entities to which it applies. from
the place of the pragma
to the end of the innermost enclosing declarative region, or, if the
given in a package_specification
and includes a name,
to the end of the scope of the named entity. If the pragma
includes a name,
the permission applies only to checks performed on the named entity,
or, for a subtype, on objects and values of its type. Otherwise, the
permission applies to all entities.
has been given to suppress a given check, the check is said to be suppressed
A check is suppressed even
if the implementation chooses not to actually generate better code.
allows the implementation to raise Program_Error, for example, if the
erroneousness is detected.
Unsuppress revokes the permission to omit the named check (or every check
in the case of All_Checks) given by any pragma
Suppress that applies at the point of the pragma
Unsuppress. The permission is revoked for the region to which the pragma
Unsuppress applies. If there is no such permission at the point of a
then the pragma
has no effect. A later pragma
Suppress can renew the permission.
The following are the
[The following checks correspond
to situations in which the exception Constraint_Error is raised upon
[When evaluating a dereference (explicit or implicit), check that the
value of the name
is not null
. When converting to a subtype
that excludes null, check that the converted value is not null. When
passing an actual parameter to a formal access parameter, check that
the value of the actual parameter is not null. When
evaluating a discriminant_association
for an access discriminant, check that the value of the discriminant
is not null.
[Check that the discriminants of a composite value have the values imposed
by a discriminant constraint. Also, when accessing a record component,
check that it exists for the current discriminant values.]
[Check that the second operand is not zero for the operations /, rem rem
and mod mod.]
[Check that the bounds of an array value are equal to the corresponding
bounds of an index constraint. Also, when accessing a component of an
array object, check for each dimension that the given index value belongs
to the range defined by the bounds of the array object. Also, when accessing
a slice of an array object, check that the given discrete range is compatible
with the range defined by the bounds of the array object.]
[Check that two arrays have matching components, in the case of array
subtype conversions, and logical operators for arrays of boolean components.]
[Check that a scalar value is within the base range of its type, in cases
where the implementation chooses to raise an exception instead of returning
the correct mathematical result.]
[Check that a scalar value satisfies a range constraint. Also, for the
elaboration of a subtype_indication
check that the constraint
(if present) is compatible with the subtype denoted by the subtype_mark
Also, for an aggregate
check that an index or discriminant value belongs to the corresponding
subtype. Also, check that when the result of an operation yields an array,
the value of each component belongs to the component subtype.]
[Check that operand tags in a dispatching call are all equal. Check for
the correct tag on tagged type conversions, for an assignment_statement
and when returning a tagged limited object from a function.]
[The following checks correspond
to situations in which the exception Program_Error is raised upon failure.]
[Check the accessibility level of an entity or
[For an allocator,
check that the master of any tasks to be created by the allocator
is not yet completed or some dependents have not yet terminated, and
that the finalization of the collection has not started.]
[When a subprogram or protected entry is called, a task activation is
accomplished, or a generic instantiation is elaborated, check that the
body of the corresponding unit has already been elaborated.]
paragraph was deleted.
[Check the accessibility level of an entity or
[The following check
corresponds to situations in which the exception Storage_Error is raised
[Check that evaluation of an allocator
does not require more space than is available for a storage pool. Check
that the space available for a task or subprogram has not been exceeded.]
We considered splitting this
out into three categories: Pool_Check (for allocator
Stack_Check (for stack usage), and Heap_Check (for implicit use of the
heap — use of the heap other than through an allocator
Storage_Check would then represent the union of these three. However,
there seems to be no compelling reason to do this, given that it is not
feasible to split Storage_Error.
[The following check
corresponds to all situations in which any predefined exception is raised.]
Represents the union of all checks; suppressing All_Checks suppresses
all checks other than those associated with assertions.
In addition, an implementation is allowed (but not required) to behave
as if a pragma Assertion_Policy(Ignore) applies to any region to which
pragma Suppress(All_Checks) applies.
Ramification: All_Checks includes both
language-defined and implementation-defined checks.
To be honest:
There are additional checks defined in various
Specialized Needs Annexes that are not listed here. Nevertheless, they
are included in All_Checks and named in a Suppress pragma on implementations
that support the relevant annex. Look up “check, language-defined”
in the index to find the complete list.
We don't want to say that assertions are suppressed,
because we don't want the potential failure of an assertion to cause
erroneous execution (see below). Thus they are excluded from the suppression
part of the above rule and then handled with an implicit Ignore policy.
If a given check has been suppressed,
and the corresponding error situation occurs, the execution of the program
An implementation is allowed to place restrictions on checking
pragmas, subject only to the requirement that pragma
Unsuppress shall allow any check names supported by pragma
Suppress Suppress pragmas
An implementation is allowed to add additional check names, with implementation-defined
When Overflow_Check has been suppressed,
an implementation may also suppress an unspecified subset of the Range_Checks.
The permission to restrict is given so the implementation
can give an error message when the requested suppression is nonsense,
such as suppressing a Range_Check on a task type. It would be verbose
and pointless to list all the cases of nonsensical language-defined checks
in the standard, and since the list of checks is open-ended, we can't
list the restrictions for implementation-defined checks anyway.
Implementation defined: Implementation-defined
Discussion: For Overflow_Check, the intention
is that the implementation will suppress any Range_Checks that are implemented
in the same manner as Overflow_Checks (unless they are free).
An implementation may support an additional parameter
Unsuppress similar to the one allowed for pragma
Suppress (see J.10). The meaning of such a
parameter is implementation-defined.
Existence and meaning of second parameter
The implementation should minimize the code executed
for checks that have been suppressed.
Code executed for checks that have been
suppressed should be minimized.
Implementation Note: However, if a given
check comes for free (for example, the hardware automatically performs
the check in parallel with doing useful work) or nearly free (for example,
the check is a tiny portion of an expensive run-time system call), the
implementation should not bother to suppress the check. Similarly, if
the implementation detects the failure at compile time and provides a
warning message, there is no need to actually suppress the check.
is no guarantee that a suppressed check is actually removed; hence a
should be used only for efficiency reasons.
It is possible to give both a pragma
Suppress and Unsuppress for the same check immediately within the same
In that case, the last pragma
given determines whether or not the check is suppressed. Similarly, it
is possible to resuppress a check which has been unsuppressed by giving
a pragma Suppress
in an inner declarative region.
Examples of suppressing and unsuppressing
pragma Unsuppress(Overflow_Check); Range_Check);
pragma Suppress(Index_Check, On => Table);
Extensions to Ada 83
Additional check names are added. We allow implementations
to define their own checks.
Wording Changes from Ada 83
We define the checks in a distributed manner.
Therefore, the long list of what checks apply to what is merely a NOTE.
We have removed the detailed rules about what
is allowed in a pragma
Suppress, and allow implementations to invent their own. The RM83 rules
weren't quite right, and such a change is necessary anyway in the presence
of implementation-defined checks.
We make it clear that the difference between
a Range_Check and an Overflow_Check is fuzzy. This was true in Ada 83,
given RM83-11.6, but it was not clear. We considered removing Overflow_Check
from the language or making it obsolescent, just as we did for Numeric_Error.
However, we kept it for upward compatibility, and because it may be useful
on machines where range checking costs more than overflow checking, but
overflow checking still costs something. Different compilers will suppress
different checks when asked to suppress Overflow_Check — the nonuniformity
in this case is not harmful, and removing it would have a serious impact
Extensions to Ada 95
Wording Changes from Ada 95
The description of Access_Check was corrected by
the Corrigendum to include the discriminant case. This change was then
replaced by the more general notion of checking conversions to subtypes
that exclude null in Ada 2005.
The On parameter of pragma Suppress was moved to
Annex J (see J.10). This feature's effect
is inherently nonportable, depending on the implementation's model of
computation. Compiler surveys demonstrated this, showing that implementations
vary widely in the interpretation of these parameters, even on the same
target. While this is relatively harmless for Suppress (which is never
required to do anything), it would be a significant problem for Unsuppress
(we want the checks to be made for all implementations). By moving it,
we avoid needing to define the meaning of Unsuppress with an On parameter.
The order of the Program_Error checks was corrected
to be alphabetical.
Wording Changes from Ada 2005
The effect of a checking pragma no longer applies
inside an inlined subprogram body. While this could change the behavior
of a program that depends on a check being suppressed in an inlined body,
such a program is erroneous and thus no behavior can be depended upon
anyway. It's also likely to be very rare. We make this change so that
inlining has no effect on the meaning of the subprogram body (since inlining
is never requiring, this is necessary in order to be able to reason about
the body), and so that assertion policies and suppress work the same
way for inlining.
Ada 2005 and 2012 Editions sponsored in part by Ada-Europe