If there exists no sequence of transitions from the parser's start state to some state s, then Bison considers s to be an unreachable state. A state can become unreachable during conflict resolution if Bison disables a shift action leading to it from a predecessor state.
By default, Bison removes unreachable states from the parser after conflict resolution because they are useless in the generated parser. However, keeping unreachable states is sometimes useful when trying to understand the relationship between the parser and the grammar.
Request that Bison allow unreachable states to remain in the parser tables. value must be a Boolean. The default is
There are a few caveats to consider:
Unreachable states may contain conflicts and may use rules not used in any other state. Thus, keeping unreachable states may induce warnings that are irrelevant to your parser's behavior, and it may eliminate warnings that are relevant. Of course, the change in warnings may actually be relevant to a parser table analysis that wants to keep unreachable states, so this behavior will likely remain in future Bison releases.
While Bison is able to remove unreachable states, it is not guaranteed to remove other kinds of useless states. Specifically, when Bison disables reduce actions during conflict resolution, some goto actions may become useless, and thus some additional states may become useless. If Bison were to compute which goto actions were useless and then disable those actions, it could identify such states as unreachable and then remove those states. However, Bison does not compute which goto actions are useless.