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Core Data singleton manager class capable of being run from a static library
// DataManager.h
#import <Foundation/Foundation.h>
#import <CoreData/CoreData.h>
extern NSString * const DataManagerDidSaveNotification;
extern NSString * const DataManagerDidSaveFailedNotification;
@interface DataManager : NSObject {
@property (nonatomic, readonly, retain) NSManagedObjectModel *objectModel;
@property (nonatomic, readonly, retain) NSManagedObjectContext *mainObjectContext;
@property (nonatomic, readonly, retain) NSPersistentStoreCoordinator *persistentStoreCoordinator;
+ (DataManager*)sharedInstance;
- (BOOL)save;
- (NSManagedObjectContext*)managedObjectContext;
// DataManager.m
#import "DataManager.h"
NSString * const DataManagerDidSaveNotification = @"DataManagerDidSaveNotification";
NSString * const DataManagerDidSaveFailedNotification = @"DataManagerDidSaveFailedNotification";
@interface DataManager ()
- (NSString*)sharedDocumentsPath;
@implementation DataManager
@synthesize persistentStoreCoordinator = _persistentStoreCoordinator;
@synthesize mainObjectContext = _mainObjectContext;
@synthesize objectModel = _objectModel;
NSString * const kDataManagerBundleName = @"MyApp";
NSString * const kDataManagerModelName = @"MyApp";
NSString * const kDataManagerSQLiteName = @"MyApp.sqlite";
+ (DataManager*)sharedInstance {
static dispatch_once_t pred;
static DataManager *sharedInstance = nil;
dispatch_once(&pred, ^{ sharedInstance = [[self alloc] init]; });
return sharedInstance;
- (void)dealloc {
[self save];
[_persistentStoreCoordinator release];
[_mainObjectContext release];
[_objectModel release];
[super dealloc];
- (NSManagedObjectModel*)objectModel {
if (_objectModel)
return _objectModel;
NSBundle *bundle = [NSBundle mainBundle];
if (kDataManagerBundleName) {
NSString *bundlePath = [[NSBundle mainBundle] pathForResource:kDataManagerBundleName ofType:@"bundle"];
bundle = [NSBundle bundleWithPath:bundlePath];
NSString *modelPath = [bundle pathForResource:kDataManagerModelName ofType:@"momd"];
_objectModel = [[NSManagedObjectModel alloc] initWithContentsOfURL:[NSURL fileURLWithPath:modelPath]];
return _objectModel;
- (NSPersistentStoreCoordinator*)persistentStoreCoordinator {
if (_persistentStoreCoordinator)
return _persistentStoreCoordinator;
// Get the paths to the SQLite file
NSString *storePath = [[self sharedDocumentsPath] stringByAppendingPathComponent:kDataManagerSQLiteName];
NSURL *storeURL = [NSURL fileURLWithPath:storePath];
// Define the Core Data version migration options
NSDictionary *options = [NSDictionary dictionaryWithObjectsAndKeys:
[NSNumber numberWithBool:YES], NSMigratePersistentStoresAutomaticallyOption,
[NSNumber numberWithBool:YES], NSInferMappingModelAutomaticallyOption,
// Attempt to load the persistent store
NSError *error = nil;
_persistentStoreCoordinator = [[NSPersistentStoreCoordinator alloc] initWithManagedObjectModel:self.objectModel];
if (![_persistentStoreCoordinator addPersistentStoreWithType:NSSQLiteStoreType
error:&error]) {
NSLog(@"Fatal error while creating persistent store: %@", error);
return _persistentStoreCoordinator;
- (NSManagedObjectContext*)mainObjectContext {
if (_mainObjectContext)
return _mainObjectContext;
// Create the main context only on the main thread
if (![NSThread isMainThread]) {
[self performSelectorOnMainThread:@selector(mainObjectContext)
return _mainObjectContext;
_mainObjectContext = [[NSManagedObjectContext alloc] init];
[_mainObjectContext setPersistentStoreCoordinator:self.persistentStoreCoordinator];
return _mainObjectContext;
- (BOOL)save {
if (![self.mainObjectContext hasChanges])
return YES;
NSError *error = nil;
if (![self.mainObjectContext save:&error]) {
NSLog(@"Error while saving: %@\n%@", [error localizedDescription], [error userInfo]);
[[NSNotificationCenter defaultCenter] postNotificationName:DataManagerDidSaveFailedNotification
return NO;
[[NSNotificationCenter defaultCenter] postNotificationName:DataManagerDidSaveNotification object:nil];
return YES;
- (NSString*)sharedDocumentsPath {
static NSString *SharedDocumentsPath = nil;
if (SharedDocumentsPath)
return SharedDocumentsPath;
// Compose a path to the <Library>/Database directory
NSString *libraryPath = [[NSSearchPathForDirectoriesInDomains(NSLibraryDirectory, NSUserDomainMask, YES) objectAtIndex:0] retain];
SharedDocumentsPath = [[libraryPath stringByAppendingPathComponent:@"Database"] retain];
// Ensure the database directory exists
NSFileManager *manager = [NSFileManager defaultManager];
BOOL isDirectory;
if (![manager fileExistsAtPath:SharedDocumentsPath isDirectory:&isDirectory] || !isDirectory) {
NSError *error = nil;
NSDictionary *attr = [NSDictionary dictionaryWithObject:NSFileProtectionComplete
[manager createDirectoryAtPath:SharedDocumentsPath
if (error)
NSLog(@"Error creating directory path: %@", [error localizedDescription]);
return SharedDocumentsPath;
- (NSManagedObjectContext*)managedObjectContext {
NSManagedObjectContext *ctx = [[[NSManagedObjectContext alloc] init] autorelease];
[ctx setPersistentStoreCoordinator:self.persistentStoreCoordinator];
return ctx;

odowd commented Mar 16, 2012

Are there any example projects using DataManager? I am having a hard time understanding what is left in the XCode Core Data AppDelegate after pulling this functionality across to DataManager.


NachoMan commented Mar 16, 2012

Yeah, though I can't say which ones. The problem is that your AppDelegate should only contain the most basic of things: What to do when your app starts up, what to do when your app goes into the background, when it becomes active, etc. Cluttering it up with Core Data house-cleaning overloads what the AppDelegate is meant to do. For example, in your AppDelegate's willEnterBackground, you can make a simple one-line call to [[DataManager sharedInstance] save];

See my blog post on the topic here:

odowd commented Mar 18, 2012

Thanks - I have read the blog post with great interest. XCore 4.2.1 seems to have made some of the changes to the template already - for example it versions properly through the call to initWithContentsOfURL. I'd now like to set up an XCode template to do it your way.

I note DataManager needs to have the name of its bundle hardcoded (@"MyApp"). Is there any way it can detect the name of the bundle it is included in? That would avoid having to make local copies of the files for every project.

rojotek commented Apr 11, 2012

Hey - just did a fork to remove the "retain" and "dealloc" methods which aren't ARC friendly.

What is the best way to implement undoManager?

@NachoMan, thanks for posting this and @rojotek for the update.

I'd like to echo @odowd's last question, what's the reasoning behind hardcoding the app bundle name? Seems like the mainBundle would be adequate. (I have to comment out L#46-50 in the .m file, or it doesn't find the url in the bundle and throws an exception, it's not finding my bundle via the name.)


NachoMan commented Jul 2, 2012

No reason really, you can just as easily make it programmatic by introspecting the NSBundle object and fetching the target name.

pechar commented Feb 26, 2013

@NachoMan thanks for this great helper class. Got everything to work, though as @pillbaker said I used the [NSBundle mainBundle] to get the momd. I have a question regarding
-(NSManagedObjectContext*)managedObjectContext method. What is it's use? Initially I though that is the NSManagedObjectContext I should have used but later noticed it is the mainObjectContext I should be using.

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