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DeleteAtom info  Overview  Group

The DeleteAtom function decrements the reference count of a local string atom. If the atomís reference count is reduced to zero, DeleteAtom removes the string associated with the atom from the local atom table.

ATOM DeleteAtom(

    ATOM nAtom 

// atom to delete



Identifies the atom and character string to be deleted.

Return Values

If the function succeeds, the return value is zero.

If the function fails, the return value is the nAtom parameter. To get extended error information, call GetLastError.


A string atomís reference count specifies the number of times the atom has been added to or removed from the atom table. The AddAtom function increments the count on each call. The DeleteAtom function decrements the count on each call but removes the string only if the atomís reference count is zero.

The only way to ensure that an atom has been deleted from the atom table is to call this function repeatedly until it fails. When the reference count is reduced to zero, the next call to the FindAtom or DeleteAtom function fails.

The DeleteAtom function has no effect on an integer atom (an atom created by using the MAKEINTATOM macro). The function always returns zero for an integer atom.

See Also

AddAtom, FindAtom, GlobalAddAtom, GlobalDeleteAtom, GlobalFindAtom, MAKEINTATOM

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