Reference of tuple struct from reference

Assuming I have a struct (or enum variant), that is defined as

struct Test(T);

with some type T, how can I get a &'a Test from &'a T? Or in other words, is there a way to implement From<&'a T> for &'a Test?

It can be done for a struct with unsafe code if the struct is marked with #[repr(transparent)]. The bytemuck crate provides a deriveable TransparentWrapper that provides this functionality and ensures the unsafe code is correct.

I think you can do the same manually for enums if the enum only has a single variant, but the TransparentWrapper derive only supports structs.

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Thank you! I guess for enums with multiple variants this won't work without cloning as the things have an incompatible layout?

If I remember right, then one common mistake is to transmute the references (while it's only correct to transmute raw pointers).

Yep. You would need to create a new instance of your enum somewhere and take a reference to it, whether that is by making a copy of the T on the heap and leaking it or however you decided to implement it.

To elaborate on your comment about layouts - the allocation referred to by &T only contains std::mem::size_of::<T>() number of bytes, but an enum with multiple variants would need to point to std::mem::size_of::<T>() + size_of_tag number of bytes. Obviously, if we took a &T and naively transmuted it to an &EnumContainingT, we would be able to access data outside the original variable's allocation (e.g. by reading other things on the heap or nearby stack variables).

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