Commit e208f9c introduced a macro to turn error() calls

  (error(), -1)

to make the constant return value more visible to the
calling code (and thus let the compiler make better
decisions about the code).

This works well for code like:

  return error(...);

but the "-1" is superfluous in code that just calls error()
without caring about the return value. In older versions of
gcc, that was fine, but gcc 4.9 complains with -Wunused-value.

We can work around this by encapsulating the constant return
value in a static inline function, as gcc specifically
avoids complaining about unused function returns unless the
function has been specifically marked with the
warn_unused_result attribute.

We also use the same trick for config_error_nonbool and
opterror, which learned the same error technique in a469a10.

Reported-by: Felipe Contreras <>
Signed-off-by: Jeff King <>
On Mon, May 05, 2014 at 05:29:38PM -0400, Jeff King wrote:

> I cannot think of any other way to make the compiler aware of the
> constant value, but perhaps somebody else is more clever than I am.

This came to me in a dream, and seems to work.

 cache.h           | 2 +-
 git-compat-util.h | 6 +++++-
 parse-options.h   | 2 +-
 3 files changed, 7 insertions(+), 3 deletions(-)

diff --git a/cache.h b/cache.h
index 107ac61..e2f12b0 100644
--- a/cache.h
+++ b/cache.h
@@ -1272,7 +1272,7 @@ extern int git_env_bool(const char *, int);
 extern int git_config_system(void);
 extern int config_error_nonbool(const char *);
 #if defined(__GNUC__) && ! defined(__clang__)
-#define config_error_nonbool(s) (config_error_nonbool(s), -1)
+#define config_error_nonbool(s) (config_error_nonbool(s), const_error())
 extern const char *get_log_output_encoding(void);
 extern const char *get_commit_output_encoding(void);
diff --git a/git-compat-util.h b/git-compat-util.h
index f6d3a46..b4c437e 100644
--- a/git-compat-util.h
+++ b/git-compat-util.h
@@ -331,7 +331,11 @@ extern void warning(const char *err, ...) 
__attribute__((format (printf, 1, 2)))
  * using the function as usual.
 #if defined(__GNUC__) && ! defined(__clang__)
-#define error(...) (error(__VA_ARGS__), -1)
+static inline int const_error(void)
+       return -1;
+#define error(...) (error(__VA_ARGS__), const_error())
 extern void set_die_routine(NORETURN_PTR void (*routine)(const char *err, 
va_list params));
diff --git a/parse-options.h b/parse-options.h
index 3189676..2f9be96 100644
--- a/parse-options.h
+++ b/parse-options.h
@@ -177,7 +177,7 @@ extern NORETURN void usage_msg_opt(const char *msg,
 extern int optbug(const struct option *opt, const char *reason);
 extern int opterror(const struct option *opt, const char *reason, int flags);
 #if defined(__GNUC__) && ! defined(__clang__)
-#define opterror(o,r,f) (opterror((o),(r),(f)), -1)
+#define opterror(o,r,f) (opterror((o),(r),(f)), const_error())
 /*----- incremental advanced APIs -----*/

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