Nuclide has limited, built-in support for Objective-C, which allows you to build native iOS applications directly within Nuclide.

Install Objective-C

By installing Xcode, you will have full access to Objective-C.

Linux does not have Xcode. However, there are ways to compile Objective-C programs on Linux using gobjc, gnustep, etc.

However, to get the full feature list for Objective-C support, you must compile your Objective-C program with Buck.

Default Features

Objective-C’s integration into Nuclide provides you with productivity features out-of-the-box such as:

Automatic Square Bracket Completion

If you forget to put a starting bracket at the front of your target or selector, one will be inserted for you automatically if you add the ending bracket. This will work for any number of bracket levels deep.

For example, if you add an ending bracket here…

… then the beginning bracket is inserted for you automatically.

To enable this setting:

  1. Open the Nuclide Settings tab either by pressing Cmd+, (Ctrl-, on Linux) or by going to Package | Settings View | Open.
  2. Select Packages from the list at the left, and search for nuclide.
  3. Click on the Settings button for the nuclide package.
  4. Scroll down until you find nuclide-objc, and select the Enable Automatic Square Bracket Completion checkbox.

Automatic Colon Indenting

Nuclide will automatically indent the colons (:) associated with new method arguments to be aligned with the arguments of that method.

If you start a : at the beginning of the next line after the method declaration…

… it will be aligned automatically.

Buck-enabled Features

The following features require that your Objective-C project is compiled with Buck.

You can also generate a compile_commands.json file with the json-compilation-databse reporter of xctool to get these features.

The Buck toolbar allows you to build and run your Buck-enabled programs.

Code Diagnostics

If you write code that will cause clang errors or warnings, Nuclide’s Code Diagnostics will show you the error. You can see the error in two places: inline within the Editing Area, and in the Code Diagnostics pane below.

Hover over the sideways red triangle in the gutter to see the clang error inline.

Type Hints

Hovering over an Objective-C object will provide you the type of that object inline.

In fact, you can even pin that type hint so that it always displays. Just click on the pin icon when hovering over a variable to pin it.

Click the x icon of a pinned type hint to remove it.

Pinned type hints can be moved anywhere within the editor.


Buck enhances the understanding of the types of objects in your project so that autocomplete can be enabled.

Without Buck, you will still get the default autocomplete feature, but without project and object specific information.

Jump To Definition

Nuclide provides a jump to definition/symbol feature for Objective-C programs.

For example, if you want to go to the definition of initWithHelloString:, hover over initWithHelloString: and either press Cmd-<mouse click> (Ctrl-<mouse click> on Linux) or Cmd-Option-Enter (Ctrl-Alt-Enter on Linux).

Jump Between Header and Implementation

Using Cmd-Option-N (Ctrl-Alt-N on Linux), you can jump between the header (i.e., .h) and the implementation (i.e., .cpp or .m) files.


Nuclide has support for iOS debugging and Buck for native Objective-C applications (i.e., .m files).

Debugging Swift applications is currently not supported.

See the Buck guide for how to build, run and debug iOS apps.

Optimally, it would be nice to run the application directly from Xcode and attach to the simulator process associated with that Xcode project. However, due to lldb process conflict issues, this is currently not possible.

LLDB Commands

Native iOS debugging uses LLDB as its debugging backend. You can run LLDB commands directly in the Nuclide Debugger’s Console.