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RedHat 9 (Linux i386) - man page for bn_clear (redhat section 3)

BN_new(3)							      OpenSSL								 BN_new(3)

NAME
BN_new, BN_init, BN_clear, BN_free, BN_clear_free - allocate and free BIGNUMs
SYNOPSIS
#include <openssl/bn.h> BIGNUM *BN_new(void); void BN_init(BIGNUM *); void BN_clear(BIGNUM *a); void BN_free(BIGNUM *a); void BN_clear_free(BIGNUM *a);
DESCRIPTION
BN_new() allocated and initializes a BIGNUM structure. BN_init() initializes an existing uninitialized BIGNUM. BN_clear() is used to destroy sensitive data such as keys when they are no longer needed. It erases the memory used by a and sets it to the value 0. BN_free() frees the components of the BIGNUM, and if it was created by BN_new(), also the structure itself. BN_clear_free() additionally overwrites the data before the memory is returned to the system.
RETURN VALUES
BN_new() returns a pointer to the BIGNUM. If the allocation fails, it returns NULL and sets an error code that can be obtained by ERR_get_error(3). BN_init(), BN_clear(), BN_free() and BN_clear_free() have no return values.
SEE ALSO
bn(3), ERR_get_error(3)
HISTORY
BN_new(), BN_clear(), BN_free() and BN_clear_free() are available in all versions on SSLeay and OpenSSL. BN_init() was added in SSLeay 0.9.1b. 0.9.7a 2002-09-25 BN_new(3)

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