get all methods of an objective-c class or instance?

0 votes
asked Jan 19, 2010 by georg-fritzsche

In Objective-C i can test wether a given class or instance responds to certain selectors. But how can query a class or instance for all its methods or properties of a class (e.g. a list of all methods or properties)?

Wether documented or not, it has to be possible as e.g. WebView can query a plugins scriptable object for all methods and properties if they should be visible to scripts or not.

4 Answers

0 votes
answered Jan 19, 2010 by user250120

This is possible via objc_method_list. In order to enumerate your methods, you will have to register all your methods before hand.

The process is straight forward: after you've declared your function you can create an instance of objc_method and register the function name. Then add the objc_method to a objc_method_list and finally pass the objc_method_list to class_addMethods..

Here is a link to get you started:

0 votes
answered Jan 19, 2010 by ben-gottlieb

You'll want to use the Objective C runtime methods, see here:

0 votes
answered Jan 22, 2014 by buzzy

You can do this and it is extremely well documented at

To fetch all the instance or class methods of a class, you may use class_copyMethodList and iterate over the results. An example:

 #import <objc/runtime.h>

 *  Gets a list of all methods on a class (or metaclass)
 *  and dumps some properties of each
 *  @param clz the class or metaclass to investigate
void DumpObjcMethods(Class clz) {

    unsigned int methodCount = 0;
    Method *methods = class_copyMethodList(clz, &methodCount);

    printf("Found %d methods on '%s'\n", methodCount, class_getName(clz));

    for (unsigned int i = 0; i < methodCount; i++) {
        Method method = methods[i];

        printf("\t'%s' has method named '%s' of encoding '%s'\n",

         *  Or do whatever you need here...


You will need to make two separate calls to this method. One for the instance methods and another for the class methods:

 *  This will dump all the instance methods

Calling the same on the metaclass will give you all the class methods

 *  Calling the same on the metaclass gives you
 *  the class methods
DumpObjcMethods(object_getClass(yourClass) /* Metaclass */);
0 votes
answered Jan 21, 2016 by boris-verebsky

In addition to Buzzy answer. For debugging purposes you may use -[NSObject _methodDescription] private method.

Either in lldb:

(lldb) po [[UIApplication sharedApplication] _methodDescription]

or in code:

@interface NSObject (Private)
- (NSString*)_methodDescription;

// Somewhere in the code:
NSLog(@"%@", [objectToInspect performSelector:@selector(_methodDescription)]);

Output will looks as following:

<__NSArrayM: 0x7f9 ddc4359a0>:
in __NSArrayM:
    Class Methods:
        + (BOOL) automaticallyNotifiesObserversForKey:(id)arg1; (0x11503b510)
        + (id) allocWithZone:(_NSZone*)arg1; (0x11503b520)
        + (id) __new:::::(const id*)arg1; (0x114f0d700)
    Instance Methods:
        - (void) removeLastObject; (0x114f669a0)
        - (void) dealloc; (0x114f2a8f0)
        - (void) finalize; (0x11503b2c0)
        - (id) copyWithZone:(_NSZone*)arg1; (0x114f35500)
        - (unsigned long) count; (0x114f0d920)
        - (id) objectAtIndex:(unsigned long)arg1; (0x114f2a730)
        - (void) getObjects:(id*)arg1 range:(_NSRange)arg2; (0x114f35650)
        - (void) addObject:(id)arg1; (0x114f0d8e0)
        - (void) setObject:(id)arg1 atIndex:(unsigned long)arg2; (0x114f99680)
        - (void) insertObject:(id)arg1 atIndex:(unsigned long)arg2; (0x114f0d940)
        - (void) exchangeObjectAtIndex:(unsigned long)arg1 withObjectAtIndex:(unsigned long)arg2; (0x114f8bf80)
in NSMutableArray:
    Class Methods:
        + (id) copyNonRetainingArray; (0x11ee20178)
        + (id) nonRetainingArray; (0x11ee201e8)
        + (id) nonRetainingArray; (0x120475026)
        + (id) arrayWithCapacity:(unsigned long)arg1; (0x114f74280)
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