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Object garbage collection of events

P: n/a
Object garbage collection of events

I can not help wondering how the garbage collection system handles
events.

If I release all references to an object that has a void that an event
somewhere is using I then have no access to the class holding the void
so it should be garbage collected.

But if an event holds a reference to a void of the class that I have
no reference to douse the class stay in memory because something
refers to it or is that reference removed from the event.

Basically do I need to remove all event calls before releasing an
object or are they removed automatically.

I hope someone understands what I mean.

This code thaw incomplete hopefully helps explain what I mean.

Thank you all

Jay Dee

<code>

static class Program
{
static void Main()
{
Form1 form = new Form1();
form.myClass = new MyClass();
form.MyEvent += new EventHandler(form.myClass.MyEventCall);
form.myClass = null;
Application.Run(form);
}
}

public class Form1 : System.Windows.Forms.Form
{
MyClass myClass;

public event System.EventHandler MyEvent;

public void OnMyEvent(EventArgs e)
{
if (this.MyEvent != null)
{
this.MyEvent(this, e);
}
}
}

public class MyClass
{
public void MyEventCall(object sender, EventArgs e)
{
// do somthing.
}
}

</code>
Jul 26 '08 #1
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11 Replies


P: n/a
Events do not hold refences to objects, nor does garbage collection relate
to an object's events.

An object is elligible for garbage collection when it has no "applicattion
roots", that is it is no longer reachable from any code paths in the
application. Hooking an object up to an event handler (registering
delegates to handle event notifications for the object) do not count as an
application root. Only object variables count.

-Scott
"Jay Dee" <fi******@gmail.comwrote in message
news:a0**********************************@m44g2000 hsc.googlegroups.com...
Object garbage collection of events

I can not help wondering how the garbage collection system handles
events.

If I release all references to an object that has a void that an event
somewhere is using I then have no access to the class holding the void
so it should be garbage collected.

But if an event holds a reference to a void of the class that I have
no reference to douse the class stay in memory because something
refers to it or is that reference removed from the event.

Basically do I need to remove all event calls before releasing an
object or are they removed automatically.

I hope someone understands what I mean.

This code thaw incomplete hopefully helps explain what I mean.

Thank you all

Jay Dee

<code>

static class Program
{
static void Main()
{
Form1 form = new Form1();
form.myClass = new MyClass();
form.MyEvent += new EventHandler(form.myClass.MyEventCall);
form.myClass = null;
Application.Run(form);
}
}

public class Form1 : System.Windows.Forms.Form
{
MyClass myClass;

public event System.EventHandler MyEvent;

public void OnMyEvent(EventArgs e)
{
if (this.MyEvent != null)
{
this.MyEvent(this, e);
}
}
}

public class MyClass
{
public void MyEventCall(object sender, EventArgs e)
{
// do somthing.
}
}

</code>

Jul 26 '08 #2

P: n/a
On Fri, 25 Jul 2008 18:50:22 -0700, Jay Dee <fi******@gmail.comwrote:
Object garbage collection of events

I can not help wondering how the garbage collection system handles
events.

If I release all references to an object that has a void that an event
somewhere is using I then have no access to the class holding the void
so it should be garbage collected.
What do you mean by "void"? If you mean a method or delegate, then you're
severely abusing the word "void".
But if an event holds a reference to a void of the class that I have
no reference to douse the class stay in memory because something
refers to it or is that reference removed from the event.

Basically do I need to remove all event calls before releasing an
object or are they removed automatically.
Assuming you are asking whether, in the code you posted, the instance of
MyClass becomes eligible for garbage collection when "form.myClass = null"
is executed, the answer is "no", the event handler is not removed
automatically and so the MyClass instance remains reachable.

Pete
Jul 26 '08 #3

P: n/a
On Fri, 25 Jul 2008 20:34:38 -0700, Scott M. <s-***@nospam.nospamwrote:
Events do not hold refences to objects,
Indirectly, they do.
nor does garbage collection relate to an object's events.
It does. Regardless of what the delegate references, an event retains a
reference to any delegate subscribed to the event. If that delegate was
constructed from an instance method, then it includes a reference to the
class instance used, and so the event implicitly also includes that
reference.
An object is elligible for garbage collection when it has no
"applicattion
roots", that is it is no longer reachable from any code paths in the
application. Hooking an object up to an event handler (registering
delegates to handle event notifications for the object) do not count as
an
application root. Only object variables count.
There's no difference between an event and any other field in the object.
None are actually "roots", as the class instance must be referenced by
something else (for example, by a local variable on the stack, which
_would_ be a root), but as long as the object itself is reachable, so too
is anything referenced by its fields, including any events.

Pete
Jul 26 '08 #4

P: n/a
Do this in an MdiChild form
MdiParent.Activated += SomeMethod;

Then dispose of that MdiChild form. The form will not be collected until
the main form closes.

Pete

Jul 26 '08 #5

P: n/a
On Jul 25, 9:07*pm, "Peter Duniho" <NpOeStPe...@nnowslpianmk.com>
wrote:

I wonder: how do you manually collect a static object/variable?
Specifically, a static class. In another thread I created a static
class for a subform/child window that works fine but 'hangs around',
and when the subform/child window is reopened, the static class is
still there, and creates problems since it's part of an Event/Delegate
model.

RL
Jul 26 '08 #6

P: n/a
raylopez99 wrote:
On Jul 25, 9:07 pm, "Peter Duniho" <NpOeStPe...@nnowslpianmk.com>
wrote:

I wonder: how do you manually collect a static object/variable?
Specifically, a static class. In another thread I created a static
class for a subform/child window that works fine but 'hangs around',
and when the subform/child window is reopened, the static class is
still there, and creates problems since it's part of an Event/Delegate
model.

RL
The object isn't static, it's only the reference to the object that is
static. The object is allocated on the heap just like any other object,
and if you remove the reference from the static variable (e.g. setting
it to null), the object can be garbage collected.

--
Göran Andersson
_____
http://www.guffa.com
Jul 26 '08 #7

P: n/a
On Jul 25, 11:34*pm, "Scott M." <s-...@nospam.nospamwrote:
Events do not hold refences to objects, nor does garbage collection relate
to an object's events.

An object is elligible for garbage collection when it has no "applicattion
roots", that is it is no longer reachable from any code paths in the
application. *Hooking an object up to an event handler (registering
delegates to handle event notifications for the object) do not count as an
application root. *Only object variables count.

-Scott
This misunderstanding could be costly...

http://www.codeproject.com/KB/showca...SProfiler.aspx
Jul 26 '08 #8

P: n/a
I thank you all for your valuable responses.

Sorry for miss using the word “void” I think that I mean “method”.

I am still slightly confused as there seems to be two different views
here and I don’t know witch is correct.

Would I be correct in saying that in my example above a call to
“form.MyEvent” will not call the method “MyEventCall” as I no longer
have a valid reference to that method.

Or is that method still valid because the event its self still refers
to it.

Thank you all.

Jay Dee
Jul 26 '08 #9

P: n/a
On Sat, 26 Jul 2008 10:05:11 -0700, Jay Dee <fi******@gmail.comwrote:
[...]
Would I be correct in saying that in my example above a call to
“form.MyEvent” will not call the method “MyEventCall” as I no longer
have a valid reference to that method.
No, that would be incorrect.
Or is that method still valid because the event its self still refers
to it.
Yes. When you subscribe to the event, a delegate is created ("new
EventHandler(...)"), and that delegate references the instance of MyClass
used to create the delegate. As long as the event itself is reachable, so
too will be anything it references, and anything that it references
references, and so on.

Just because _some_ reference to that instance of MyClass no longer
exists, that doesn't make the instance go away. It's only when that
instance of MyClass becomes "unreachable" that the instance may be garbage
collected. An instance is "reachable" if a reference to it is stored in a
root (such as a static field or local variable), or a reference to it is
stored in a data structure that is itself "reachable" (so there's a
recursive aspect to the definition of "reachable", as noted above).

So in your example, as long as the Form1 instance is reachable, so too is
any class instance referenced in a delegate subscribed to an even in the
Form1 instance.

Basically: the garbage collector doesn't go around invalidating
references. Instead, it collects objects only when you can no longer get
at them.

Pete
Jul 26 '08 #10

P: n/a
Would I be correct in saying that in my example above a call to
“form.MyEvent” will not call the method “MyEventCall” as I no longer
have a valid reference to that method.

No, that would be incorrect.
Or is that method still valid because the event its self still refers
to it.

Yes. *When you subscribe to the event, a delegate is created ("new *
EventHandler(...)"), and that delegate references the instance of MyClass*
used to create the delegate. *As long as the event itself is reachable,so *
too will be anything it references, and anything that it references *
references, and so on.

* *Just because _some_ reference to that instance of MyClass no longer *
exists, that doesn't make the instance go away. *It's only when that *
instance of MyClass becomes "unreachable" that the instance may be garbage *
collected. *An instance is "reachable" if a reference to it is stored in a *
root (such as a static field or local variable), or a reference to it is *
stored in a data structure that is itself "reachable" (so there's a *
recursive aspect to the definition of "reachable", as noted above).

So in your example, as long as the Form1 instance is reachable, so too is*
any class instance referenced in a delegate subscribed to an even in the *
Form1 instance.

Basically: the garbage collector doesn't go around invalidating *
references. *Instead, it collects objects only when you can no longer get *
at them.

Pete
Thank you. That was a well written response.
Jul 26 '08 #11

P: n/a
>>Basically do I need to remove all event calls before releasing an
object or are they removed automatically.<<

Jay... As Peter suggest, using events can lead to the "lapsed listener"
conumdrum:

http://weblogs.asp.net/fmarguerie/ar...27/198489.aspx

One solution is the weak event manager:

http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/libr...akeventmanager.
aspx

Another alternative would be supplier driven registration of listeners.

Regards,
Jeff

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Jul 27 '08 #12

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