Objectpool - Object pool implementation in C++11


Object pool allocator

This is a C++11 implementation of an object pool allocator.

For more information on object pool allocators and their purpose see http://gameprogrammingpatterns.com/object-pool.html.

Both a fixed size pool (FixedObjectPool) and a dynamically growing pool (DynamicObjectPool) implementation are included.

The main features of this implementation are:

  • new_object method uses C++11 std::forward to pass construction arguments to the constructor of the new object being created in the pool
  • for_each method will iterate over all live objects in the pool calling the given function on them
  • delete_all method will free all pool objects at once, skipping the destructor call for trivial types
  • maintains a freelist of next available pool entry for fast allocation

These object pool classes are not designed with exceptions in mind as most game code avoids using exceptions.

Example usage

// some type to be pooled
struct Enemy {
/* some data */
Enemy(const char* name);
void update(double delta_time);

// created fixed size pool with space for 64 enemies
FixedObjectPool<Enemy> enemy_pool(64);

// allocate an enemy - construction parameters are forwarded
Enemy* baddie = enemy_pool.new_object("The Mekon");

// update all live enemies by executing the lambda on all allocated objects
enemy_pool.for_each([delta_time](Enemy* enemy)

// delete a single enemy

// delete all enemies at once (beware of dangling pointers)

Implementation details

Both FixedObjectPool and DynamicObjectPool are implemented using the ObjectPoolBlock class.

ObjectPoolBlock is a single allocation containing the ObjectPoolBlock instance, indices of used pool entries and the pool memory itself.

Occupancy is tracked using indexes into available entries in the block for constant time allocation. The ObjectPoolBlock keeps the next free index head. This index can be used to find the next available block entry when allocating a new entry.

A separate list of indices is used to track occupancy versus reusing object pool memory for this purpose to avoid polluting CPU caches with objects which are deleted and thus no longer in use.

Unit testing

Unit tests are written using the Catch unit testing framework. Unit tests are run through the runtest executable.


This repository also includes bench.hpp which is a single header file micro-benchmarking framework inspired by Catch and Rust's benchmarking tests.

It's my intention to make this standalone at some point but at the moment it's very much a work in progress.

Currently each micro-benchmark compares the performance of the following:

  • Fixed pool
  • Dynamic pool with 64, 128 and 256 entry blocks
  • The default allocator

Benchmarks output nanoseconds per iteration (lower is better) and megabytes per second throughput (higher is better).


The test and benchmarking applications require CMake to generate build files.

Compiling and running

To generate a build, compile and run follow these steps:

mkdir build
cd build
cmake -DCMAKE_BUILD_TYPE=Release ..


This software is licensed under the zlib license, see the LICENSE file for details.

  • x64 constructor func error

    x64 constructor func error

    vs2015, x64 error

    struct Node { void* p1; };
    int main()
        FixedObjectPool<Node> pool(1);
        reutrn 0;

    error in

    ObjectPoolBlock<T>* ObjectPoolBlock<T>::create(index_t entries_per_block)
                == reinterpret_cast<uint8_t*>(ptr) + header_size + indices_size);
    opened by bigt1234 5
  • the realloc may change pointer

    the realloc may change pointer

    you use realloc to add block ,but realloc may return a pointer different from the previous, if this happen, all the allocated object pointer will be invalid. this is a serious issue. so i advise not to use realloc, but alloc a new chunk, then use lists to connect the chunks.

    opened by wiltchamberian 1
Cameron Hart
Game engine/physics programmer at Wargaming.net
Cameron Hart
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