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Using range in switch case in C/C++

  • Difficulty Level : Easy
  • Last Updated : 01 Apr, 2021

You all are familiar with switch case in C/C++, but did you know you can use range of numbers instead of a single number or character in case statement.

  • That is the case range extension of the GNU C compiler and not standard C or C++
  • You can specify a range of consecutive values in a single case label, like this:
case low ... high:
  • It can be used for ranges of ASCII character codes like this:
 case 'A' ... 'Z':
  • You need to Write spaces around the ellipses. For example, write this:
// Correct  -   case 1 ... 5:
// Wrong -    case 1...5: 


// C program to illustrate
// using range in switch case
#include <stdio.h>
int main()
    int arr[] = { 1, 5, 15, 20 };
    for (int i = 0; i < 4; i++)
        switch (arr[i])
        case 1 ... 6:
            printf("%d in range 1 to 6\n", arr[i]);
        case 19 ... 20:
            printf("%d in range 19 to 20\n", arr[i]);
            printf("%d not in range\n", arr[i]);
    return 0;


1 in range 1 to 6
5 in range 1 to 6
15 not in range
20 in range 19 to 20

Time Complexity: O(n), where n is the size of array arr.

Auxiliary Space: O(1)
Exercise : You can try above program for char array by modifying char array and case statement.
Error conditions: 

  1. low > high : The compiler gives an error message.
  2. Overlapping case values : If the value of a case label is within a case range that has already been used in the switch statement, the compiler gives an error message.

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