Crate derive_where

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Attribute proc-macro to simplify deriving standard and other traits with custom generic type bounds.


The derive_where attribute can be used just like std’s #[derive(...)] statements:

#[derive_where(Clone, Debug)]
struct Example<T>(PhantomData<T>);

This will generate trait implementations for Example for any T, as opposed to std’s derives, which would only implement these traits with T: Trait bound to the corresponding trait.

Multiple derive_where attributes can be added to an item, but only the first one must use any path qualifications.

#[derive_where::derive_where(Clone, Debug)]
#[derive_where(Eq, PartialEq)]
struct Example1<T>(PhantomData<T>);

If using a different package name, you must specify this:

#[derive_where(crate = derive_where_)]
#[derive_where(Clone, Debug)]
struct Example<T>(PhantomData<T>);

In addition, the following convenience options are available:

Generic type bounds

Separated from the list of traits with a semi-colon, types to bind to can be specified. This example will restrict the implementation for Example to T: Clone:

#[derive_where(Clone, Debug; T)]
struct Example<T, U>(T, PhantomData<U>);

It is also possible to specify the bounds to be applied. This will bind implementation for Example to T: Super:

trait Super: Clone + Debug {}

#[derive_where(Clone, Debug; T: Super)]
struct Example<T>(PhantomData<T>);

But more complex trait bounds are possible as well. The example below will restrict the Clone implementation for Example to T::Type: Clone:

trait Trait {
	type Type;

struct Impl;

impl Trait for Impl {
	type Type = i32;

#[derive_where(Clone, Debug; T::Type)]
struct Example<T: Trait>(T::Type);

Any combination of options listed here can be used to satisfy a specific constrain. It is also possible to use multiple separate constrain specifications when required:

#[derive_where(Clone, Debug; T)]
#[derive_where(Eq, PartialEq; U)]
struct Example<T, U>(PhantomData<T>, PhantomData<U>);

Enum default

Since Rust 1.62 deriving Default on an enum is possible with the #[default] attribute. Derive-where allows this with a #[derive_where(default)] attribute:

#[derive_where(Clone, Default)]
enum Example<T> {

Skipping fields

With a skip or skip_inner attribute fields can be skipped for traits that allow it, which are: Debug, Hash, Ord, PartialOrd, PartialEq, Zeroize and ZeroizeOnDrop.

#[derive_where(Debug, PartialEq; T)]
struct Example<T>(#[derive_where(skip)] T);

assert_eq!(format!("{:?}", Example(42)), "Example");
assert_eq!(Example(42), Example(0));

It is also possible to skip all fields in an item or variant if desired:

#[derive_where(Debug, PartialEq)]
struct StructExample<T>(T);

assert_eq!(format!("{:?}", StructExample(42)), "StructExample");
assert_eq!(StructExample(42), StructExample(0));

#[derive_where(Debug, PartialEq)]
enum EnumExample<T> {

assert_eq!(format!("{:?}", EnumExample::A(42)), "A");
assert_eq!(EnumExample::A(42), EnumExample::A(0));

Selective skipping of fields for certain traits is also an option, both in skip and skip_inner. To prevent breaking invariants defined for these traits, some of them can only be skipped in groups. The following groups are available:

#[derive_where(Debug, PartialEq)]
struct Example<T>(i32, PhantomData<T>);

assert_eq!(format!("{:?}", Example(42, PhantomData::<()>)), "Example");
	Example(42, PhantomData::<()>),
	Example(0, PhantomData::<()>)

Incomparable variants/items

Similar to the skip attribute, incomparable can be used to skip variants or items in PartialEq and PartialOrd trait implementations, meaning they will always yield false for eq and None for partial_cmp. This results in all comparisons but !=, i.e. ==, <, <=, >= and >, with the marked variant or struct evaluating to false.

#[derive_where(PartialEq, PartialOrd)]
enum EnumExample {
assert_eq!(EnumExample::Comparable, EnumExample::Comparable);
assert_ne!(EnumExample::Incomparable, EnumExample::Incomparable);
assert!(!(EnumExample::Comparable >= EnumExample::Incomparable));
assert!(!(EnumExample::Comparable <= EnumExample::Incomparable));
assert!(!(EnumExample::Incomparable >= EnumExample::Incomparable));
assert!(!(EnumExample::Incomparable <= EnumExample::Incomparable));

#[derive_where(PartialEq, PartialOrd)]
struct StructExample;

assert_ne!(StructExample, StructExample);
assert!(!(StructExample >= StructExample));
assert!(!(StructExample <= StructExample));

Note that it is not possible to use incomparable with Eq or Ord as that would break their invariants.

Zeroize options

Zeroize has two options:

  • crate: an item-level option which specifies a path to the zeroize crate in case of a re-export or rename.
  • fqs: a field-level option which will use fully-qualified-syntax instead of calling the zeroize method on self directly. This is to avoid ambiguity between another method also called zeroize.
#[derive_where(Zeroize(crate = zeroize_))]
struct Example(#[derive_where(Zeroize(fqs))] i32);

impl Example {
	// If we didn't specify the `fqs` option, this would lead to a compile
	// error because of method ambiguity.
	fn zeroize(&mut self) {
		self.0 = 1;

let mut test = Example(42);

// Will call the struct method.
assert_eq!(test.0, 1);

// WIll call the `Zeroize::zeroize` method.
Zeroize::zeroize(&mut test);
assert_eq!(test.0, 0);

ZeroizeOnDrop options

If the zeroize-on-drop feature is enabled, it implements ZeroizeOnDrop and can be implemented without Zeroize, otherwise it only implements Drop and requires Zeroize to be implemented.

ZeroizeOnDrop has one option:

  • crate: an item-level option which specifies a path to the zeroize crate in case of a re-export or rename.
#[derive_where(ZeroizeOnDrop(crate = zeroize_))]
struct Example(i32);


Supported traits

The following traits can be derived with derive-where:

Supported items

Structs, tuple structs, unions and enums are supported. Derive-where tries it’s best to discourage usage that could be covered by std’s derive. For example unit structs and enums only containing unit variants aren’t supported.

Unions only support Clone and Copy.

PartialOrd and Ord need to determine the discriminant type to function correctly. To protect against a potential future change to the default discriminant type, some compile-time validation is inserted to ascertain that the type remains isize.

no_std support

no_std support is provided by default.

Crate features


The current MSRV is 1.57 and is being checked by the CI. A change will be accompanied by a minor version bump. If MSRV is important to you, use derive-where = "~1.x" to pin a specific minor version to your crate.


  • derivative is a great alternative with many options. Notably it doesn’t support no_std and requires an extra #[derive(Derivative)] to use.
  • derive_bounded is a new alternative still in development.


See the CHANGELOG file for details.


Licensed under either of

at your option.


Unless you explicitly state otherwise, any contribution intentionally submitted for inclusion in the work by you, as defined in the Apache-2.0 license, shall be dual licensed as above, without any additional terms or conditions.

Attribute Macros