[C++-sig] eposing classes with protected destructors

Daniel Paull dlp at fractaltechnologies.com
Mon Dec 23 04:05:32 CET 2002

Hi all,

I've just updated to the latest CVS version of boost.python and am
having trouble exposing classes with protected destructors.  The classes
in the library that I am wrapping have protected destructors to enforce
the use of the a ref-counting mechanism for object lifetime management.

Previously I had done the following to get Python/C++ to work together:

template< class T >
class RefCountedObject
	typedef T element_type;
	explicit RefCountedObject( T* t ) : m_pPtr( t )
		if ( m_pPtr ) m_pPtr->addRef();
		if ( m_pPtr ) m_pPtr->releaseRef();
	T& operator*() const { return *get(); }
	T* operator->() const{ return get(); }
	T* get() const { return m_pPtr; }
	T* m_pPtr;

class_< WrappedClass, RefCountedObject< WrappedClass >, ... >( ... )

Here the RefCountedObject simply increments the refcount of the C++
object to hold it alive while Python is using it.  This reference is
released when the Python Object (and hence, the RefCountedObject) is

I thought this was pretty neat, though I'd be happy to get advice on a
better solution if one exists.

The compile error I get with the latest CVS version is that the
destructor of "WrappedClass" is inaccessible at line 22 of

I've tracked this back to rvalue_from_python_data.hpp (line 132):

template <class T>
inline rvalue_from_python_data<T>::~rvalue_from_python_data()
    if (this->stage1.convertible == this->storage.bytes)

I won't pretend to know all the details of what is going on here, but I
have an inkling that the "if" test would fail in this case, but
obviously, the code for the referent destroyer must be compiled anyhow.

Any suggestions?


Daniel Paull

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