C++ std::vector with view support


This Content is from Stack Overflow. Question asked by Martin Perry

I have a large codebase that uses std::vector as data storage for numbers. However, now I need to add support for raw data views, due to external C library that returns raw array. Due to performance reasons, I dont want to copy data to std::vector.

I was thinking to use std::span from C++20 and create my own storage class like this:

template <typename T>
class DataStorage {
   std::vector<T> data;


   std::span<T> view;

   DataStorage(const std::vector<T>& d) : 
      view(data) {

   DataStorage(T* d) : 
      view(d) {

   //other ctors
   //and methods

std::vector<int> vect{ 10, 20, 30 };
DataStorage<int> data(vect);
int value = data.view[1];

To read from data, view will be used. If data are passed via vector, DataStorage clas will own them. If I pass data via raw pointer (or with some flag), DataStorage will create only view. Is this a valid design?


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