Compiler error: “initializer element is not a compile-time constant”

5 Solutions Collect From Internet About “Compiler error: “initializer element is not a compile-time constant””

When you define a variable outside the scope of a function, that variable’s value is actually written into your executable file. This means you can only use a constant value. Since you don’t know everything about the runtime environment at compile time (which classes are available, what is their structure, etc.), you cannot create objective c objects until runtime, with the exception of constant strings, which are given a specific structure and guaranteed to stay that way. What you should do is initialize the variable to nil and use +initialize to create your image. initialize is a class method which will be called before any other method is called on your class.


NSImage *imageSegment = nil;
+ (void)initialize {
        imageSegment = [[NSImage alloc] initWithContentsOfFile:@"/User/asd.jpg"];
- (id)init {
    self = [super init];
    if (self) {
        // Initialization code here.

    return self;

A global variable has to be initialized to a constant value, like 4 or 0.0 or @"constant string" or nil. A object constructor, such as init, does not return a constant value.

If you want to have a global variable, you should initialize it to nil and then return it using a class method:

NSImage *segment = nil;

+ (NSImage *)imageSegment
    if (segment == nil) segment = [[NSImage alloc] initWithContentsOfFile:@"/user/asd.jpg"];
    return segment;

Because you are asking the compiler to initialize a static variable with code that is inherently dynamic.

The reason is that your are defining your imageSegment outside of a function in your source code (static variable).

In such cases, the initialization cannot include execution of code, like calling a function or allocation a class. Initializer must be a constant whose value is known at compile time.

You can then initialize your static variable inside of your init method (if you postpone its declaration to init).

You can certainly #define a macro as shown below. The compiler will replace “IMAGE_SEGMENT” with its value before compilation. While you will achieve defining a global lookup for your array, it is not the same as a global variable. When the macro is expanded, it works just like inline code and so a new image is created each time. So if you are careful in where you use the macro, then you would have effectively achieved creating a global variable.

#define IMAGE_SEGMENT [[NSImage alloc] initWithContentsOfFile:@"/User/asd.jpg"];

Then use it where you need it as shown below. Each time the below code is executed, a new object is created with a new memory pointer.

imageSegment = IMAGE_SEGMENT