Convenient C++ struct initialisation

I’m trying to find a convenient way to initialise ‘pod’ C++ structs. Now, consider the following struct:

struct FooBar {
  int foo;
  float bar;
// just to make all examples work in C and C++:
typedef struct FooBar FooBar;

If I want to conveniently initialise this in C (!), I could simply write:

/* A */ FooBar fb = { .foo = 12, .bar = 3.4 }; // illegal C++, legal C

Note that I want to explicitly avoid the following notation, because it strikes me as being made to break my neck if I change anything in the struct in the future:

/* B */ FooBar fb = { 12, 3.4 }; // legal C++, legal C, bad style?

To achieve the same (or at least similar) in C++ as in the /* A */ example, I would have to implement an annoying constructor:

FooBar::FooBar(int foo, float bar) : foo(foo), bar(bar) {}
// ->
/* C */ FooBar fb(12, 3.4);

Which feels redundant and unnecessary. Also, it is pretty much as bad as the /* B */ example, as it does not explicitly state which value goes to which member.

So, my question is basically how I can achieve something similar to /* A */ or better in C++? Alternatively, I would be okay with an explanation why I should not want to do this (i.e. why my mental paradigm is bad).


By convenient, I mean also maintainable and non-redundant.


Designated initializes will be supported in c++2a, but you don’t have to wait, because they are officialy supported by GCC, Clang and MSVC.

#include <iostream>
#include <filesystem>

struct hello_world {
    const char* hello;
    const char* world;

int main () 
    hello_world hw = {
        .hello = "hello, ",
        .world = "world!"
    std::cout << hw.hello << << std::endl;
    return 0;

GCC Demo MSVC Demo

Update 20201

As @Code Doggo noted, anyone who is using Visual Studio 2019 will need to set /std:c++latest  for the “C++ Language Standard” field contained under Configuration Properties -> C/C++ -> Language.