[Gtk-sharp-list] widget destruction

Christopher David Howie me at chrishowie.com
Tue Mar 8 18:22:29 EST 2011

 On Mon, 7 Mar 2011 19:14:40 -0600, Mike Kestner wrote:
> seeing as I'm the
> only one who seems to think Dispose and Destroy actually mean two
> different things in the context of a C# binding to GObject.  It makes
> more sense to me that Destroy call Dispose, not vice-versa, and the
> using (FooDialog) pattern isn't all that compelling to me.

 I mostly agree with Lluis, but wanted to elaborate on a point and call 
 out another.

 Most people, AIUI, expect IDisposable.Dispose to release and destroy 
 all native resources held by an object.  Therefore it seems 
 counter-intuitive to me that Dispose() on a Gtk# widget would release 
 only the managed object and allow the unmanaged one to continue to live. 
 The only place where this makes sense, IMO, is when a managed object is 
 created to wrap a previously-created unmanaged object.  For people 
 familiar with .NET, they are going to expect "using(var foo = new 
 FooDialog())" to properly release all resources held by the new instance 
 of FooDialog, but in Gtk# 2 this is not the case.  IMO this is an API 
 design defect.

 As far as syntax goes, I find it hard to believe that you don't see 
 much difference between

     using (var foo = new FooDialog())


     FooDialog d;
     try {
         d = new FooDialog();
     } finally {
         if (d != null) {

 I know which one I would rather write...

 One compromise might be to have something hacky like this:

     public static class GtkObjectCoda
         public static ObjectDestroyer<T> Destroyer<T>(this T self)
             where T : Gtk.Object
             if (self == null)
                 throw new ArgumentNullException("self");

             return new ObjectDestroyer(self);

         public struct ObjectDestroyer<T> : IDisposable
             where T : Gtk.Object
             private T gtkObject;

             public T Object
                     var obj = gtkObject;

                     if (obj == null)
                         throw new 

                     return obj;

             internal ObjectDestroyer(T obj)
                 Object = obj;

             public void Dispose()
                 var obj = Interlocked.Exchange(ref gtkObject, null);

                 if (obj == null)
                     throw new 


 Then, on Gtk# 2:

     using (var foo = new FooDialog().Destroyer())

 Meh.  It's not terrible, but having Dispose() do The Right Thing would 
 be better.

 Chris Howie

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