Silly property question

Discussion in 'Mac Programming' started by ace2600, Jun 12, 2008.

  1. ace2600 macrumors member

    Mar 16, 2008
    Austin, Texas

    Given something like
    @interface ExampleClass NSObject {
    NSObject *prop;

    property (nonatomic,retainNSObject *prop;
    If I access prop within ExampleClass am I accessing it as a property (using the property getters and setters) or am I accessing the variable directly? If directly, do I need to call self.prop to access using the property getters/setters/etc.?

    Also, does anyone know of links to good examples on retain vs assign. I've read a few articles, but I feel example situations on when you'd use one over the other would be helpful.
  2. tacoman667 macrumors regular

    Mar 27, 2008
    In my book it says that in Obj-C 2.0 garbage collection, retain and assign have no real difference because the GC will pick em up automatically. If I recall though.

    The book also says that if you are using the property to instantiate auto getters/setters then you would need to use "dot" notation, for eaxample use over [property doesSomething].
  3. therevolution macrumors 6502

    May 12, 2003
    Yes, access to prop would be direct. self.prop would use the getter/setter methods.

    I don't know of any resources, no. But if you understand what retain means, and where you should and shouldn't use it, it's not too hard. If you don't know how/when to use retain, definitely learn it ASAP. It's pretty fundamental.

    I would say as a rule of thumb, you're going to want to retain anything that inherits from NSObject. You'd use assign for primitives, like int, float, BOOL, and also for things like structs.
  4. tacoman667 macrumors regular

    Mar 27, 2008
    *SMACKHEAD* Duh. I forgot about that till I read your post.
  5. ace2600 thread starter macrumors member

    Mar 16, 2008
    Austin, Texas
    Thanks for the help!

    self.prop = nil has the same affect as [prop release]? If so, is there a preference on the best way to deallocate the variable?
  6. Catfish_Man macrumors 68030


    Sep 13, 2001
    Portland, OR
    Interesting question :) I would try it and see. Something like

    NSLog(@"Retain count is: %d", [self.prop retainCount]);
    self.prop = nil;
    NSLog(@"Retain count is: %d", [self.prop retainCount]);

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