How is this Implementation of a list in C?

Please tell me whether it is good or please mention any problems. It is a singly linked List and I tried to do it recursively.

#include <stdio.h>
#include <stdlib.h>
#include <conio.h>

struct node{
    int value;
    struct node *next;

void add(struct node *lst, int num){
    if(lst->next == NULL){
        lst->value = num;
        lst->next = (struct node*)malloc(sizeof(struct node*));
        lst->next->next = NULL;
        add(lst->next, num);

void print_lst(struct node *lst){
    if(lst->next == NULL){

        printf("\n%d", lst->value);

int length(struct node *lst){
    if(lst->next == NULL){
        return 0;
        return 1 + length(lst->next);

int get(struct node *lst, int pos){
    if(pos < 0 ||  pos >= length(lst)){
        fprintf(stderr ,"\nIndexOutOfBoundsException\n");
    }else if(pos > 0 && pos <length(lst)){
        pos += -1;
        get(lst->next, pos);
    } else if (pos == 0){
        return  lst->value;

int main ( ) {

    struct node lst;
    lst.next = NULL;
    add(&lst, 13);
    add(&lst, 12);
    add(&lst,  1);
    add(&lst, 10);
    add(&lst, 10);
    add(&lst, 4);
    printf("\n%d", get(&lst, 2));
    printf("\n%d", get(&lst, 5));
    printf("\n%d", get(&lst, 13));

    printf("\n\n%d", length(&lst));
    return 0;
  • Do not cast the result of malloc. If your code does #include <stdlib.h>, the cast is redundant. If it does not, the cast just masks the warning, which may lead to hard to find bugs.

  • Prefer sizeof(object) to sizeof(type). The latter leads to the double maintenance problem, in case the type is changed.

  • I strongly recommend to have a constructor-like function to create a node:

    struct node * create_node(int num)
        struct node * node = malloc(sizeof(*node));
        node->value = num;
        node->next = NULL;
        return node;

    It will spare you plenty of trouble when the definition of struct node changes.

  • You should get a warning that get doesn't always return a value (if you do not, enable all warnings, or change the compiler). It is a very serious warning, and in real life the code with such a problem leads to some dire consequences. You must return get(lst->next, pos); in a recursive clause.

    The fact that your main printed expected values is an unlucky coincidence.

    What to return in the IndexOutOfBound situation is a different matter. Consider returning an error code along with the value.

  • Calling length(lst) at each level of recursion degrades performance to quadratic.

  • As a side note, rather than testing for position < 0, consider passing a position as some unsigned type. size_t is the most obvious candidate.

  • Along the same line, a low level utility function such as get should refrain from printing anything.

  • I strongly advise agains recursion when an iterative solution is immediately available.

  • \$\begingroup\$ Thanks for the statement. Now I can improve my List. Thanks \$\endgroup\$ – Markus Pfeifenberger Nov 3 at 13:05

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