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FindFirstChild

Returns the first child of the Instance found with the given name. If no child exists with the given name, this function returns nil. If the optional recursive argument is true, this function searches all descendants rather than only the immediate children of the Instance. Use this function if your code cannot guarantee the existence of an object with a given name.

Checking the Existence of An Object

FindFirstChild is necessary if you need to verify an object something exists before continuing. Attempting to index a child by name using the dot operator throws an error if the child doesn’t exist.

 -- The following line errors if Part doesn't exist in the Workspace:
workspace.Part.Transparency = .5

Use FindFirstChild to first check for Part, then use an if-statement to run code that needs it.

local part = workspace:FindFirstChild("Part")
if part then
	part.Transparency = .5
end

Finding a Child Whose Name Matches a Property

Sometimes the Instance/Name|Name of an object is the same as that of a property of its Instance/Parent|Parent. When using the dot operator, properties take precedence over children if they share a name.

In the following example, a Folder called “Color” is added to a Part, which also has the Part/Color property. Part.Color refers to the datatype/Color3, not the Folder.

local part = Instance.new("Part")
local folder = Instance.new("Folder")
folder.Name = "Color"
folder.Parent = part
local c = part.Color --> A Color3
local c2 = part:FindFirstChild("Color") --> The Folder

A benefit of using FindFirstChild in this way is that the introduction of new properties does not impose a risk on your code.

Performance Note

FindFirstChild takes about 20% longer than using dot operator, and almost 8 times longer than simply storing a reference to an object. Therefore, you should avoid calling FindFirstChild in performance dependent code, such as in tight loops or functions connected to RunService/Heartbeat/RunService/RenderStepped. Store the result in a variable, or consider using Instance/ChildAdded|ChildAdded or Instance/WaitForChild|WaitForChild to detect when a child of a given name becomes available.

Parameters

Name Type Default Description

The Instance/Name to be searched for.

false

Whether or not the search should be conducted recursively.

Returns

Return Type Summary

The Instance found.


Code Samples


Instance:FindFirstChild

The below would look in Workspace for an object name “Brick”. If found, it will change the name of the object to “Foo”.

local found = workspace:FindFirstChild("Brick")
if found then 
  found.Name = "Foo"
end