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In Lua a good way to check if a table t is empty is to check if next(t) == nil.

What is the best way to check if a table is empty using the C API? Is it basically the same technique?

    // table is on stack at index t
    lua_pushnil(L); // nil key
    if (lua_next(L, t))
        // not empty
        lua_pop(L, 2);
       // empty

Or is there a better way?