_splitpath_s, _wsplitpath_s

Break a path name into components. These are versions of _splitpath, _wsplitpath with security enhancements as described in Security Enhancements in the CRT.

errno_t _splitpath_s(
   const char * path,
   char * drive,
   size_t driveNumberOfElements,
   char * dir,
   size_t dirNumberOfElements,
   char * fname,
   size_t nameNumberOfElements,
   char * ext, 
   size_t extNumberOfElements
errno_t _wsplitpath_s(
   const wchar_t * path,
   wchar_t * drive,
   size_t driveNumberOfElements,
   wchar_t *dir,
   size_t dirNumberOfElements,
   wchar_t * fname,
   size_t nameNumberOfElements,
   wchar_t * ext,
   size_t extNumberOfElements
template <size_t drivesize, size_t dirsize, size_t fnamesize, size_t extsize>
errno_t _splitpath_s(
   const char *path,
   char (&drive)[drivesize],
   char (&dir)[dirsize],
   char (&fname)[fnamesize],
   char (&ext)[extsize]
); // C++ only
template <size_t drivesize, size_t dirsize, size_t fnamesize, size_t extsize>
errno_t _wsplitpath_s(
   const wchar_t *path,
   wchar_t (&drive)[drivesize],
   wchar_t (&dir)[dirsize],
   wchar_t (&fname)[fnamesize],
   wchar_t (&ext)[extsize]
); // C++ only


  • [in] path
    Full path.

  • [out] drive
    Optional drive letter, followed by a colon (:).

  • [in] driveNumberOfElements
    The size of the drive buffer in single-byte or wide characters. If drive is NULL, this value must be set to zero.

  • [out] dir
    Optional directory path, including trailing slash. Forward slashes ( / ), backslashes ( \ ), or both may be used.

  • [in] dirNumberOfElements
    The size of the dir buffer in single-byte or wide characters. If dir is NULL, this value must be set to zero.

  • [out] fname
    Optional base filename (no extension).

  • [in] nameNumberOfElements
    The size of the fname buffer in single-byte or wide characters. If fname is NULL, this value must be zero.

  • [out] ext
    Optional filename extension, including leading period (.).

  • [in] extNumberOfElements
    The size of ext buffer in single-byte or wide characters. If ext is NULL, this value must be set to zero.

Return Value

Zero if successful; an error code on failure.

Error Conditions


Return Value

path is NULL


drive is NULL, driveNumberOfElements is non-zero


drive is non-NULL, driveNumberOfElements is zero


dir is NULL, dirNumberOfElements is non-zero


dir is non-NULL, dirNumberOfElements is zero


fname is NULL, nameNumberOfElements is non-zero


fname is non-NULL, nameNumberOfElements is zero


ext is NULL, extNumberOfElements is non-zero


ext is non-NULL, extNumberOfElements is zero


If any of the above conditions occurs, the invalid parameter handler is invoked, as described in Parameter Validation . If execution is allowed to continue, these functions set errno to EINVAL and return EINVAL.

If any of the buffers is too short to hold the result, these functions clear all the buffers to empty strings, set errno to ERANGE, and return ERANGE.


The _splitpath_s function breaks a path into its four components. _splitpath_s automatically handles multibyte-character string arguments as appropriate, recognizing multibyte-character sequences according to the multibyte code page currently in use. _wsplitpath_s is a wide-character version of _splitpath_s; the arguments to _wsplitpath_s are wide-character strings. These functions behave identically otherwise

Generic-Text Routine Mappings

TCHAR.H routine

_UNICODE & _MBCS not defined

_MBCS defined

_UNICODE defined





Each argument is stored in a buffer; the manifest constants _MAX_DRIVE, _MAX_DIR, _MAX_FNAME, and _MAX_EXT (defined in STDLIB.H) specify the maximum size necessary for each buffer. The other arguments point to buffers used to store the path elements. After a call to _splitpath_s is executed, these arguments contain empty strings for components not found in path. You can pass a NULL pointer to _splitpath_s for any component you don't need.

In C++, using these functions is simplified by template overloads; the overloads can infer buffer length automatically, eliminating the need to specify a size argument. For more information, see Secure Template Overloads.

The debug versions of these functions first fill the buffer with 0xFD. To disable this behavior, use _CrtSetDebugFillThreshold.



Required header




<stdlib.h> or <wchar.h>

For additional compatibility information, see Compatibility in the Introduction.


See the example for _makepath_s, _wmakepath_s.

.NET Framework Equivalent

Not applicable. To call the standard C function, use PInvoke. For more information, see Platform Invoke Examples.

See Also


File Handling

_splitpath, _wsplitpath

_fullpath, _wfullpath


_makepath, _wmakepath