Gregory Higley Gregory Higley - 9 months ago 35
iOS Question

How does View Controller Containment work in iOS 5?

In WWDC 2011 Session 102, Apple introduced View Controller Containment, which is the ability to create custom view controller containers, analogous to

, and the like.

I watched the examples several times. There are a flurry of methods associated with this pattern, but it was a little hard to figure them out exactly. I'm going to post here what I think is going on and see if the community will confirm or disconfirm my suspicions.

Scenario 1: Moving from no parent to a new parent view controller

[vc willMoveToParentViewController:self];
[self addChildViewController:vc];
[self.view addSubview:vc.view]; // or something like this.
[vc didMoveToParentViewController:self];

Do the first two lines have to occur in the order given, or can they be reversed?

Scenario 2: Moving from a parent view controller to no parent view controller

[vc willMoveToParentViewController:nil];
[vc.view removeFromSuperview];
[vc removeFromParentViewController];

Is it also necessary to call
[vc didMoveToParentViewController:nil]
? The examples in Session 102 did not do this in this scenario, but I don't know whether that was an omission or not.

Scenario 3: Moving from one parent view controller to another

This will likely occur in the following way, because the logic in each parent view controller will be encapsulated.

// In the old parent
[vc willMoveToParentViewController:nil];
[vc.view removeFromSuperview];
[vc removeFromParentViewController];

// In the new parent
[vc willMoveToParentViewController:self];
[self addChildViewController:vc];
[self.view addSubview:vc.view];
[vc didMoveToParentViewController:self];


My main question is this: Is this how view controller containment should work, in general? Are the mechanics given above correct?

Is it necessary to call
before calling
? This seems like the logical order to me, but is it strictly necessary?

Is it necessary to call
after calling

Answer Source

The UIViewController docs are pretty clear on when and when not to call willMove/didMove methods. Check out the "Implementing a Container View Controller" documentation.

The docs say, that if you do not override addChildViewController, you do not have to call willMoveToParentViewController: method. However you do need to call the didMoveToParentViewController: method after the transition is complete. "Likewise, it is is the responsibility of the container view controller to call the willMoveToParentViewController: method before calling the removeFromParentViewController method. The removeFromParentViewController method calls the didMoveToParentViewController: method of the child view controller."

Also, there is an example worked out here and sample code here.

Good Luck