# Parsing text file in C++

I have a text file that contains name, age, salary, hoursWorked, randomText and are filled with different delimiters.

Text file:

susan:25-2600,28[asd]
mary:21-2200,38[asd]
john:23-3400,46[asd]


Instead of breaking them into individual strings using the code shown below:

string name,age,salary,hoursWorked,randomText;

stringstream iss(line);
getline(iss, name, ':');
getline(iss, age, '-');
getline(iss, salary, ',');
getline(iss, hoursWorked, '[');
getline(iss, randomText, ']');
}


What are some better strategies other than coding it this way?

Side note

I declared all the variables to strings because of the getline() method.

I would create a class and define an input operator:

struct Person
{
std::string name;
std::string age;
std::string salary;
std::string hoursWorked;
std::string randomText;

friend std::istream& operator>>(std::istream& str, Person& data)
{
std::string line;
Person tmp;
if (std::getline(str,line))
{
std::stringstream iss(line);
if ( std::getline(iss, tmp.name, ':')        &&
std::getline(iss, tmp.age, '-')         &&
std::getline(iss, tmp.salary, ',')      &&
std::getline(iss, tmp.hoursWorked, '[') &&
std::getline(iss, tmp.randomText, ']'))
{
/* OK: All read operations worked */
data.swap(tmp);  // C++03 as this answer was written a long time ago.
}
else
{
// One operation failed.
// So set the state on the main stream
// to indicate failure.
str.setstate(std::ios::failbit);
}
}
return str;
}
void swap(Person& other) throws() // C++03 as this answer was written a long time ago.
{
swap(name,        other.name);
swap(age,         other.age);
swap(salary,      other.salary);
swap(hoursWorked, other.hoursWorked);
swap(randomText,  other.randomText)
}
};


Now your code looks like this:

Person   data;

PS. I noticed you were using string and ifstream without the std::. This suggests you have using namespace std; in your code. Please don't do that. see Why is “using namespace std;” considered bad practice?
Don't explictly close() a file unless you are going to check that it worked (or are going the re-open). Prefer to let the destructor do the closing (that way it is exception safe). See: My C++ code involving an fstream failed review
• Nice. The only thing I would change: I would use a local Person tmp; instance, and in the if code block (the "OK: All read operations worked" part) I would write data = std::move(tmp); (or std::swap(data, tmp);).. This way, you avoid the case when the stream doesn't actually contain a valid person (in that case, if one of the getline calls fails, data will not be partially filled with garbage). – utnapistim Mar 26 '14 at 15:01