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closing a FileReader / BufferReader

Posted on 2002-05-26
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Last Modified: 2010-08-05
Hi,

1. When using FileReader or BufferReader, do you must close the object?
2. What happens if the file remains open and there's no close call?

Thanks Kayzer.
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Question by:kayzer
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tomboshell earned 520 total points
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As I see it, it is good programming practice.  The garbage collector takes care of variables when they are no longer used.  This is usually after the exit from a block of code (ie a function block or a sub-class, ect).  Then the gc may release the block of memory for the local and temp variables automatically.  However, if you readers are declared globally  then they will exist the entire time the program is running-thereby using up a lot of resources.  Leaving file pointers (readers or writers) running free you may incure read/write blocks.  If that happens you may wonder why some other code can't work with that file.  Also, what if you program grows extremely large?  Will you be able to find the proper spot to close the file again, thereby optimizing that area of code; at the same time, would others maintaining your code be capable of finding the open reader?  It is just better to close the readers.  
If you leave it open, at some time the program must be exited.  Then it will be closed by exiting the virtual machine.  If some other error or memory problem doesn't occur before hand.  
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Thanks for the grade!
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