Timmmm Timmmm - 1 month ago 5
Android Question

Further understanding setRetainInstance(true)

What exactly happens when you call

setRetainInstance(true)
on a
Fragment
? The documentation is virtually non-existent and this seems like a very important function. Specifically I want to know how much of this sequence (that I made up) is true:



  1. The user rotates the device.

  2. The fragment is detached from the
    Activity
    and
    Fragment.onDetach()
    is called.

  3. The activity is destroyed;
    Activity.onDestroy()
    is called.

  4. The
    Activity
    java object is deleted (when possible, by the GC).

  5. A new
    Activity
    java object is created; its constructor, and
    onCreate()
    are called.

  6. In
    Activity.onCreate()
    we either have
    setContentView(...)
    which sets a layout containing a fragment, or we use
    FragmentTransaction

    to add a fragment.

  7. I'm really not sure about this, but I assume that android is smart enough to find the old fragment, and call
    Fragment.onAttach()
    to
    reattach it to the new
    Activity

  8. Next (or before? who knows?)
    Activity.onResume()
    is called.




So is that correct? Is Android smart enough to find the old fragment, even if I explicitly use
FragmentTransaction.add(new MyFragment(), ...)
the first time? And if so, how do I avoid adding another fragment in
onCreate()
? Do I need to do something like this?:

if (getSupportFragmentManager().findFragmentByTag("foo") == null)
{
FragmentTransaction ft = getSupportFragmentManager().beginTransaction();
ft.add(new FooFragment(), "foo").commit();
}


Why is none of this in the documentation? Ha no, just kidding don't answer that!

Answer

Ok, perhaps I was slightly too harsh on the Android documentation, because it does have some useful information, but sadly none of it is linked from setRetainInstance(). From the page about fragments

Note: Each fragment requires a unique identifier that the system can use to restore the fragment if the activity is restarted (and which you can use to capture the fragment to perform transactions, such as remove it). There are three ways to provide an ID for a fragment:

  • Supply the android:id attribute with a unique ID.
  • Supply the android:tag attribute with a unique string.
  • If you provide neither of the previous two, the system uses the ID of the container view.

This strongly implies that if you do setContentView(R.layout.whatever) in Activity.onCreated() and that layout contains a fragment with setRetainInstance(true), then when the activity is recreated it will be searched for again using its id or tag.

Secondly, for UI-less fragments, it states

To add a fragment without a UI, add the fragment from the activity using add(Fragment, String) (supplying a unique string "tag" for the fragment, rather than a view ID). This adds the fragment, but, because it's not associated with a view in the activity layout, it does not receive a call to onCreateView(). So you don't need to implement that method.

And the docs link to a very good example - FragmentRetainInstance.java which I have reproduced below for your convenience. It does exactly what I speculated was the answer in my question (if (...findFragmentByTag() == null) { ...).

Finally, I created my own test activity to see exactly what functions are called. It outputs this, when you start in portrait and rotate to landscape. The code is below.

(This is edited a bit to make it easier to read.)

TestActivity@415a4a30: this()
TestActivity@415a4a30: onCreate()
TestActivity@415a4a30: Existing fragment not found.
TestFragment{41583008}: this() TestFragment{41583008}
TestFragment{41583008}: onAttach(TestActivity@415a4a30)
TestFragment{41583008}: onCreate()
TestFragment{41583008}: onCreateView()
TestFragment{41583008}: onActivityCreated()
TestActivity@415a4a30: onStart()
TestFragment{41583008}: onStart()
TestActivity@415a4a30: onResume()
TestFragment{41583008}: onResume()

<rotate device>

TestFragment{41583008}: onPause()
TestActivity@415a4a30: onPause()
TestFragment{41583008}: onStop()
TestActivity@415a4a30: onStop()
TestFragment{41583008}: onDestroyView()
TestFragment{41583008}: onDetach()
TestActivity@415a4a30: onDestroy()
TestActivity@415a3380: this()
TestFragment{41583008}: onAttach(TestActivity@415a3380)
TestActivity@415a3380: onCreate()
TestActivity@415a3380: Existing fragment found.
TestFragment{41583008}: onCreateView()
TestFragment{41583008}: onActivityCreated()
TestActivity@415a3380: onStart()
TestFragment{41583008}: onStart()
TestActivity@415a3380: onResume()
TestFragment{41583008}: onResume()

Note that the Android documentation is wrong: the UI-less fragment does receive a call to onCreateView() but it is free to return null.

Source code for TestActivity/TestFragment

import android.app.Activity;
import android.app.Fragment;
import android.app.FragmentTransaction;
import android.os.Bundle;
import android.util.Log;
import android.view.LayoutInflater;
import android.view.View;
import android.view.ViewGroup;
import android.widget.TextView;

import com.concentriclivers.ss.R;

// An activity for understanding Android lifecycle events.
public class TestActivity extends Activity
{
    private static final String TAG = TestActivity.class.getSimpleName();

    public TestActivity()
    {
        super();
        Log.d(TAG, this + ": this()");
    }

    protected void finalize() throws Throwable
    {
        super.finalize();
        Log.d(TAG, this + ": finalize()");
    }

    @Override
    public void onCreate(Bundle savedInstanceState)
    {
        super.onCreate(savedInstanceState);
        Log.d(TAG, this + ": onCreate()");


        TextView tv = new TextView(this);
        tv.setText("Hello world");
        setContentView(tv);

        if (getFragmentManager().findFragmentByTag("test_fragment") == null)
        {
            Log.d(TAG, this + ": Existing fragment not found.");
            FragmentTransaction ft = getFragmentManager().beginTransaction();
            ft.add(new TestFragment(), "test_fragment").commit();
        }
        else
        {
            Log.d(TAG, this + ": Existing fragment found.");
        }
    }

    @Override
    public void onStart()
    {
        super.onStart();
        Log.d(TAG, this + ": onStart()");
    }

    @Override
    public void onResume()
    {
        super.onResume();
        Log.d(TAG, this + ": onResume()");
    }

    @Override
    public void onPause()
    {
        super.onPause();
        Log.d(TAG, this + ": onPause()");
    }

    @Override
    public void onStop()
    {
        super.onStop();
        Log.d(TAG, this + ": onStop()");
    }

    @Override
    public void onDestroy()
    {
        super.onDestroy();
        Log.d(TAG, this + ": onDestroy()");
    }




    public static class TestFragment extends Fragment
    {
        private static final String TAG = TestFragment.class.getSimpleName();

        public TestFragment()
        {
            super();
            Log.d(TAG,  this + ": this() " + this);
        }

        @Override
        public void onCreate(Bundle savedInstanceState)
        {
            super.onCreate(savedInstanceState);
            Log.d(TAG, this + ": onCreate()");
            setRetainInstance(true);
        }

        @Override
        public void onAttach(final Activity activity)
        {
            super.onAttach(activity);
            Log.d(TAG, this + ": onAttach(" + activity + ")");
        }

        @Override
        public void onActivityCreated(Bundle savedInstanceState)
        {
            super.onActivityCreated(savedInstanceState);
            Log.d(TAG, this + ": onActivityCreated()");
        }

        @Override
        public View onCreateView(LayoutInflater inflater, ViewGroup container, Bundle savedInstanceState)
        {
            Log.d(TAG, this + ": onCreateView()");
            return null;
        }

        @Override
        public void onViewCreated(View view, Bundle savedInstanceState)
        {
            super.onViewCreated(view, savedInstanceState);
            Log.d(TAG, this + ": onViewCreated()");
        }

        @Override
        public void onDestroyView()
        {
            super.onDestroyView();
            Log.d(TAG, this + ": onDestroyView()");
        }

        @Override
        public void onDetach()
        {
            super.onDetach();
            Log.d(TAG, this + ": onDetach()");
        }

        @Override
        public void onStart()
        {
            super.onStart();
            Log.d(TAG, this + ": onStart()");
        }

        @Override
        public void onResume()
        {
            super.onResume();
            Log.d(TAG, this + ": onResume()");
        }

        @Override
        public void onPause()
        {
            super.onPause();
            Log.d(TAG, this + ": onPause()");
        }

        @Override
        public void onStop()
        {
            super.onStop();
            Log.d(TAG, this + ": onStop()");
        }

        @Override
        public void onDestroy()
        {
            super.onDestroy();
            Log.d(TAG, this + ": onDestroy()");
        }
    }

}

Source code for FragmentRetainInstance.java (as of API 16):

/*
 * Copyright (C) 2010 The Android Open Source Project
 *
 * Licensed under the Apache License, Version 2.0 (the "License");
 * you may not use this file except in compliance with the License.
 * You may obtain a copy of the License at
 *
 *      http://www.apache.org/licenses/LICENSE-2.0
 *
 * Unless required by applicable law or agreed to in writing, software
 * distributed under the License is distributed on an "AS IS" BASIS,
 * WITHOUT WARRANTIES OR CONDITIONS OF ANY KIND, either express or implied.
 * See the License for the specific language governing permissions and
 * limitations under the License.
 */

package com.example.android.apis.app;

import com.example.android.apis.R;

import android.app.Activity;
import android.app.Fragment;
import android.app.FragmentManager;
import android.os.Bundle;
import android.view.LayoutInflater;
import android.view.View;
import android.view.ViewGroup;
import android.view.View.OnClickListener;
import android.widget.Button;
import android.widget.ProgressBar;

/**
 * This example shows how you can use a Fragment to easily propagate state
 * (such as threads) across activity instances when an activity needs to be
 * restarted due to, for example, a configuration change.  This is a lot
 * easier than using the raw Activity.onRetainNonConfiguratinInstance() API.
 */
public class FragmentRetainInstance extends Activity {
    @Override
    protected void onCreate(Bundle savedInstanceState) {
        super.onCreate(savedInstanceState);

        // First time init, create the UI.
        if (savedInstanceState == null) {
            getFragmentManager().beginTransaction().add(android.R.id.content,
                    new UiFragment()).commit();
        }
    }

    /**
     * This is a fragment showing UI that will be updated from work done
     * in the retained fragment.
     */
    public static class UiFragment extends Fragment {
        RetainedFragment mWorkFragment;

        @Override
        public View onCreateView(LayoutInflater inflater, ViewGroup container,
                Bundle savedInstanceState) {
            View v = inflater.inflate(R.layout.fragment_retain_instance, container, false);

            // Watch for button clicks.
            Button button = (Button)v.findViewById(R.id.restart);
            button.setOnClickListener(new OnClickListener() {
                public void onClick(View v) {
                    mWorkFragment.restart();
                }
            });

            return v;
        }

        @Override
        public void onActivityCreated(Bundle savedInstanceState) {
            super.onActivityCreated(savedInstanceState);

            FragmentManager fm = getFragmentManager();

            // Check to see if we have retained the worker fragment.
            mWorkFragment = (RetainedFragment)fm.findFragmentByTag("work");

            // If not retained (or first time running), we need to create it.
            if (mWorkFragment == null) {
                mWorkFragment = new RetainedFragment();
                // Tell it who it is working with.
                mWorkFragment.setTargetFragment(this, 0);
                fm.beginTransaction().add(mWorkFragment, "work").commit();
            }
        }

    }

    /**
     * This is the Fragment implementation that will be retained across
     * activity instances.  It represents some ongoing work, here a thread
     * we have that sits around incrementing a progress indicator.
     */
    public static class RetainedFragment extends Fragment {
        ProgressBar mProgressBar;
        int mPosition;
        boolean mReady = false;
        boolean mQuiting = false;

        /**
         * This is the thread that will do our work.  It sits in a loop running
         * the progress up until it has reached the top, then stops and waits.
         */
        final Thread mThread = new Thread() {
            @Override
            public void run() {
                // We'll figure the real value out later.
                int max = 10000;

                // This thread runs almost forever.
                while (true) {

                    // Update our shared state with the UI.
                    synchronized (this) {
                        // Our thread is stopped if the UI is not ready
                        // or it has completed its work.
                        while (!mReady || mPosition >= max) {
                            if (mQuiting) {
                                return;
                            }
                            try {
                                wait();
                            } catch (InterruptedException e) {
                            }
                        }

                        // Now update the progress.  Note it is important that
                        // we touch the progress bar with the lock held, so it
                        // doesn't disappear on us.
                        mPosition++;
                        max = mProgressBar.getMax();
                        mProgressBar.setProgress(mPosition);
                    }

                    // Normally we would be doing some work, but put a kludge
                    // here to pretend like we are.
                    synchronized (this) {
                        try {
                            wait(50);
                        } catch (InterruptedException e) {
                        }
                    }
                }
            }
        };

        /**
         * Fragment initialization.  We way we want to be retained and
         * start our thread.
         */
        @Override
        public void onCreate(Bundle savedInstanceState) {
            super.onCreate(savedInstanceState);

            // Tell the framework to try to keep this fragment around
            // during a configuration change.
            setRetainInstance(true);

            // Start up the worker thread.
            mThread.start();
        }

        /**
         * This is called when the Fragment's Activity is ready to go, after
         * its content view has been installed; it is called both after
         * the initial fragment creation and after the fragment is re-attached
         * to a new activity.
         */
        @Override
        public void onActivityCreated(Bundle savedInstanceState) {
            super.onActivityCreated(savedInstanceState);

            // Retrieve the progress bar from the target's view hierarchy.
            mProgressBar = (ProgressBar)getTargetFragment().getView().findViewById(
                    R.id.progress_horizontal);

            // We are ready for our thread to go.
            synchronized (mThread) {
                mReady = true;
                mThread.notify();
            }
        }

        /**
         * This is called when the fragment is going away.  It is NOT called
         * when the fragment is being propagated between activity instances.
         */
        @Override
        public void onDestroy() {
            // Make the thread go away.
            synchronized (mThread) {
                mReady = false;
                mQuiting = true;
                mThread.notify();
            }

            super.onDestroy();
        }

        /**
         * This is called right before the fragment is detached from its
         * current activity instance.
         */
        @Override
        public void onDetach() {
            // This fragment is being detached from its activity.  We need
            // to make sure its thread is not going to touch any activity
            // state after returning from this function.
            synchronized (mThread) {
                mProgressBar = null;
                mReady = false;
                mThread.notify();
            }

            super.onDetach();
        }

        /**
         * API for our UI to restart the progress thread.
         */
        public void restart() {
            synchronized (mThread) {
                mPosition = 0;
                mThread.notify();
            }
        }
    }
}
Comments