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Last update Jan 30, 2005

Instantiating Class Objects Elsewhere Than the GC Heap

Class objects in D are normally allocated on the garbage collected (GC) heap. In some circumstances it may be desirable to instantiate them on some other heap, such as the C runtime library's heap. The normal way to do this is to overload the new and delete operators for that class; but if that is not practical the following will work.

This technique goes "under the hood" of how D works, and as such it is not guaranteed to work with every D compiler. In particular, how the constructors and destructors are called is not necessarilly portable.

Here's a module that does just that:

	import std.c.stdlib;
	import std.outofmemory;

	// This is part of the D internal runtime library support
	extern (C) void _d_callfinalizer(void *p);

	class Foo
	    this(int x, char c) { ... }
	    ~this() { ... }

	Foo alloc_Foo(int x, char c)
	    ClassInfo ci = Foo.classinfo;
	    Foo f;
	    void *p;

	    p = std.c.stdlib.malloc(ci.init.length);
	    if (!p)

	    // Initialize it
	    (cast(byte*)p)[0 .. ci.init.length] = ci.init[];

	    f = cast(Foo)p;

	    // Run constructor on it
	    f._ctor(x, c);

	    return f;

	void free_Foo(Foo f)
	{   void* p = cast(void*)f;

	    if (p)
		_d_callfinalizer(p);	// call destructor

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