Source: Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia.

In several fields, especially computing, deprecation is the discouragement of use of some terminology, feature, design, or practice, typically because it has been superseded or is no longer considered efficient or safe, without completely removing it or prohibiting its use. Typically, deprecated materials are not completely removed to ensure legacy compatibility or back up practice in case new methods are not functional in an odd scenario.

It can also imply that a feature, design, or practice will be removed or discontinued entirely in the future.[1]


In general English usage, the infinitive "to deprecate" means "to express disapproval of (something)". It derives from the Latin verb deprecari, meaning "to ward off (a disaster) by prayer".

An early documented usage of "deprecate" in this sense is in Usenet posts in 1984, referring to obsolete features in 4.2BSD and the C programming language.[2] An expanded definition of "deprecate" was cited in the Jargon File in its 1991 revision,[3] and similar definitions are found in commercial software documentation from 2014[1] and 2023.[4]


While a deprecated software feature remains in the software, its use may raise warning messages recommending alternative practices. Deprecated status may also indicate the feature will be removed in the future. Features are deprecated, rather than immediately removed, to provide backward compatibility and to give programmers time to bring affected code into compliance with the new standard.

Among the most common reasons for deprecation are:

Other usage


, while prohibiting them for new installations. Thus, though ungrounded receptacles may still be available for legal purchase in a location where they are obsolete, they would generally be intended only for repairs to existing older electrical installations.

In writing and

auto-antonymic or self-contradictory meanings; writing style guides often recommend substituting other words that are clearly understood and unambiguous. Some word usages that have acquired different connotations over time, such as gay or colored
, may be deprecated as obsolete in formal writing.

In technical standards, use of a certain clause may be discouraged or superseded by new clauses. As an example, in the Ethernet standard IEEE 802.3-2012, Clause 5 (Layer Management) is "deprecated" by Clause 30 (Management), except for 5.2.4.

Deprecation may also occur when a technical term becomes

ethyl methyl ketone" instead.[13]

See also


  1. ^ a b "JEP 277: Enhanced Deprecation". Archived from the original on 19 September 2018. Retrieved 9 February 2018.
  2. ^ Shea, Ammon. "A New Meaning of 'Deprecate'". Words We're Watching. Merriam-Webster. Retrieved 1 March 2023.
  3. ^ Raymond, Eric S.; Steele, Guy L., eds. (July 1992). The Jargon File, Version 2.9.10. Retrieved 1 March 2023 – via Project Gutenberg.
  4. ^ Stewart, Meghan (27 February 2023). "Windows client features lifecycle". What's new in Windows. Microsoft. Retrieved 1 March 2023.
  5. ^ "On the future of smbfs". 15 May 2006. Retrieved 1 March 2023.
  6. ^ GNU. "Line Input". The GNU C Library. GNU. Archived from the original on 26 January 2021. Retrieved 2 August 2008. Deprecated function: char * gets (char *s). ... The gets function is very dangerous because it provides no protection against overflowing the string s. The GNU library includes it for compatibility only. You should always use fgets or getline instead.
  7. ^ "Java Thread Primitive Deprecation". Oracle. Archived from the original on 15 October 2011. Retrieved 13 May 2011.
  8. OCLC 77574682
  9. ^ Simenel, Éric (2000). "Carbonization 101". MacTech. Vol. 16, no. 12. Retrieved 1 March 2023.
  10. ^ "The cross-platform streaming solution". VideoLAN. Retrieved 1 March 2023.
  11. ^ "Brontosaurus Finally Validated as a Distinct Dinosaur". ABC News. Archived from the original on 9 April 2020. Retrieved 27 June 2020.
  12. .
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