Delphi: Singleton Patterns

I’m a big fan of singleton patterns, basically a singleton pattern lets a class maintain a single instance of itself which you can then reuse as often as you want without having to create a new instance. This is achieved by creating a private static field inside the class that can hold an instance of itself, when the user wants to retrieve the instance for the first time, a new one is created and stored in the field, if there’s already one present, the class will return that instance. The implementation I usually use also has automated cleaning of the instance once the application terminates by adding a shared constructor. It’s also possible to add a private constructor to the class to disable the coder to create any instances of it directly without using the singleton pattern or subclassing it.

Here’s an example of the singleton pattern with cleaning:

  TTestClass = class
    class var FInstance: TTestClass;
    class function GetInstance: TTestClass;
    class destructor DestroyClass;

{ TTestClass }

class destructor TTestClass.DestroyClass;
  if Assigned(FInstance) then

class function TTestClass.GetInstance: TTestClass;
  if not Assigned(FInstance) then
    FInstance := TTestClass.Create;
  Result := FInstance;

It’s also possible to add a property named Instance or something even shorter that will get the instance from the GetInstance method which you would then make private, this will shorten the amount of code you have to write when using it.

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