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What is difference between a pointer and reference parameter in C++?
Pointer variables are used to store the address of variable.
Type *pointer; Pointer=variable name;
When a parameter is declared as reference, it becomes an alternative name for an existing parameter.
Type &newname=existing name;
Type &pointer; Pointer=variable name;
The main differences between pointers and reference parameters are −
References are used to refer an existing variable in another name whereas pointers are used to store address of variable.
References cannot have a null value assigned but pointer can.
A reference variable can be referenced by pass by value whereas a pointer can be referenced by pass by reference.
A reference must be initialized on declaration while it is not necessary in case of pointer.
A reference shares the same memory address with the original variable but also takes up some space on the stack whereas a pointer has its own memory address and size on the stack.
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