NetBeans Platform 6.9 Developer's Guide

NetBeans Platform 6.9 Developer's Guide
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Table of Contents
Sample Chapters
  • Create large, scalable, modular Swing applications from scratch
  • Master a broad range of topics essential to have in your desktop application development toolkit, right from conceptualization to distribution
  • Pursue an easy-to-follow sequential and tutorial approach that builds to a complete Swing application
  • English translation by leaders of the NetBeans community of a Germany Developer's Notebook on the NetBeans platform



Appendix A

Appendix B

Book Details

Language : English
Paperback : 288 pages [ 235mm x 191mm ]
Release Date : August 2010
ISBN : 1849511764
ISBN 13 : 9781849511766
Author(s) : Jürgen Petri
Topics and Technologies : All Books, Application Development, Java, Open Source

Table of Contents

Chapter 1: Modules
Chapter 2: Forms
Chapter 3: Window System
Chapter 4: Lookup
Chapter 5: Actions
Chapter 6: Nodes and Explorer Views
Chapter 7: File System
Chapter 8: Data System
Chapter 9: Dialogs
Chapter 10: Settings
Chapter 11: Help
Chapter 12: Branding
Chapter 13: Distribution and Updates
  • Chapter 1: Modules
    • Modular application development
    • Characteristics of a module
      • Deployment format
      • Uniqueness
      • Versioning
      • Exposed interfaces
      • Declarative dependencies
      • Lifecycle
    • Creating an application
    • Setting dependencies
    • Versioning
    • Installing modules
    • Integrating OSGi Bundles
    • The sample application
    • Summary
  • Chapter 2: Forms
    • Form Builder
      • Creating a form
      • Laying out a form
      • Aligning components on a form
      • Space distribution
    • Properties window
    • Event handling
    • Modification of generated code
    • Extending the palette
    • Summary
  • Chapter 3: Window System
    • Creating a window
      • Examining the generated files
    • Automatic window lifecycle management
      • Programmatically managing the Window lifecycle
    • Positioning of windows
    • Creating custom modes
    • Creating window groups
    • Extending the default TopComponent persistence
    • Summary
  • Chapter 4: Lookup
    • Registering and finding services
    • Creating extension points
      • Using extension points externally
    • Enabling loosely-coupled communication
      • Loosely-coupled consumption
      • Creating new tasks
    • Dynamic changes and notifications
      • Creating an additional TaskProvider
    • Proxy Lookups
    • Listening to the selection
      • Creating a service facade
    • Summary
  • Chapter 5: Actions
    • Preparing to work with global actions
    • Creating global actions
    • Examining the created files
    • Enabling Users to Invoke actions
      • Toolbar
      • Keyboard
    • Summary
  • Chapter 6: Nodes and Explorer Views
    • Multiple models in pure Swing
    • Nodes and the global Lookup
    • Multiple node implementations
      • Creating a node
    • Multiple explorer view implementations
      • Creating an explorer view
    • Controlling views with the ExplorerManager
      • Creating an ExplorerManager
    • Key-based node hierarchies
      • Creating a key-based node hierarchy
      • Displaying nodes in an explorer view
      • Exchanging explorer views
    • Lazy child creation
    • Context-sensitive actions
      • Creating the Edit Task Action
      • Creating the Add Task Action
      • Creating the Copy Task Action
      • Creating the Delete Task Action
      • Connecting the Actions to the User Interface
    • Decorating nodes
      • Creating a FilterNode
    • Displaying properties
      • Creating a Property sheet
    • Inplace property editors
    • Adding widgets
      • Creating a first scene
      • Integrating a scene into the Task Manager
    • Summary
  • Chapter 7: File System
    • Central registry
    • Accessing the local FileSystem
      • Providing additional attributes
    • Listening to file changes
    • Summary
  • Chapter 8: Data System
    • Support for new file types
      • Creating support for Task files
      • Examining the generated files
      • Customizing the DataObject
      • Refactoring the DueList module
      • Refactoring the TaskEditor module
      • Refactoring the TaskActions module
      • Refactoring the Overview module
      • Trying out the New Task File Support
    • Context-sensitive capabilities
      • Creating a save capability
      • Invoking the Save capability
      • Providing Icon Badging
    • Summary
  • Chapter 9: Dialogs
    • Notifications
    • Standard dialogs
    • Custom dialogs
    • Wizards
      • Creating a wizard
      • Designing the wizard panels
      • Controlling the wizard panels
      • Validating entered values
      • Invoking the wizard
    • Summary
  • Chapter 10: Settings
    • Options window
      • Integrating with the Options window
    • Preferences
      • Setting and using a Preference
    • Summary
  • Chapter 11: Help
    • Creating a helpset
    • Creating context-sensitive help
    • Combining help sets from different modules
    • Removing help sets provided by other modules
    • Summary
  • Chapter 12: Branding
    • Application launcher
    • Limiting the set of modules
    • Branding editor
      • Application title and icons
      • Splash screen
      • Window system features
      • Display texts
    • Summary

Jürgen Petri

Jürgen Petri ( is an independent consultant and instructor of primarily enterprise Java courses. As a Sun certified enterprise architect and Java developer, his interests relate primarily to Java EE projects, software architectures, user interface technologies, and tooling. His practical experience is based on over 10 years of work with each of the Java platforms.

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Submit Errata

Please let us know if you have found any errors not listed on this list by completing our errata submission form. Our editors will check them and add them to this list. Thank you.


- 7 submitted: last submission 05 Mar 2014

Errata type: Others | Page number: 27

The first paragraph says:..., shown in the bottom-right of the screenshot on the previous page, shown in the top-right of the screenshot above, ...It should be..., shown in the top-right of the screenshot above, ...or..., shown in the top-right of the screenshot on the previous page, ...


Errata type: Others | Page number: 34

The second code example on the page lists two functions where there are two spaces missing. private void jSlider1StateChanged(javax.swing.event.ChangeEventevt) { and private void jSlider2StateChanged(javax.swing.event.ChangeEventevt) { to be correct version would be like this: private void jSlider1StateChanged(javax.swing.event.ChangeEvent evt) { and private void jSlider2StateChanged(javax.swing.event.ChangeEvent evt) { (Space between ChangeEvent and evt)


Errata type: Others | Page number: 18 | Errata date: 19 Dec 10

Creating the module installer is shown as: New | Other | Module Installer This should be: New | Other | Module Development | Installer / Activator


Errata type: Others | Page number: 27 | Errata date: 19 nov 10

The first paragraph says: ..., shown in the bottom-right of the screenshot on the previous page, shown in the top-right of the screenshot above, ... It should be ..., shown in the top-right of the screenshot above, ... or ..., shown in the top-right of the screenshot on the previous page, ...


Errata type: Others This is a link to all the erratas in the book :

Errata type: Others | Page number: 32

The module TaskEditor should also include a dependency for the "Utilities API" which is not mentioned in the text.


Errata type: Others | Page number: 4

Lines 1&2: "The Appendices are available for free at" The url given is a broken link.

Sample chapters

You can view our sample chapters and prefaces of this title on PacktLib or download sample chapters in PDF format.

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What you will learn from this book

  • Reuse the NetBeans window system for your Swing applications, rather than creating your own
  • Explore the NetBeans module system and utilize it effectively in large applications
  • Use the standard parts of the NetBeans Platform rather than creating your own menu bars, toolbars, and other typical features
  • Handle the display of large sets of data via the NetBeans Nodes API, together with the NetBeans Platform's advanced Swing components
  • Get to know all of the main NetBeans APIs and utilize them for developing applications that suit your needs
  • Visualize your data quickly and powerfully via the NetBeans Visual Library API
  • Prototype your application and get very complex data structures displayed in interesting ways in no time
  • Create applications that can be easily deployed to Windows, Linux, and Mac
  • Build your understanding of the nuances of the NetBeans Platform as you create an application from scratch

In Detail

The NetBeans Platform has many features provided out of the box for Swing desktop application developers. It can take you hours just to create menu bars, toolbars, a window system, and other typical desktop application infrastructural needs rather than you focusing on your domain knowledge. Imagine how much time you could save with a hands-on guide for using the NetBeans Platform, which relieves you from creating desktop functions for each of your applications.

This book guides you through the development of a complete Swing application built on the NetBeans Platform. Each chapter introduces a number of new concepts relating to a theme, such as the window system, and then shows you how to implement the concepts in the application you are creating. At the end of the book you have a task manager, which you can adapt to your own purposes. Or you can, of course, create your own applications, now that you have built up a solid basis of NetBeans Platform knowledge.

The NetBeans Platform is a framework for developing large distributed desktop applications. It aims to drastically simplify desktop application development by providing a number of techniques, patterns, and full-blown Swing components out of the box. Most desktop applications have very similar technical requirements, such as: a consistent user interface, extensibility, data display, configuration settings, a help system, distribution mechanisms, on-line update possibilities, and the ability to be deployed to multiple operating systems.

Fulfilling these technical requirements over and over again for each new application is expensive, superfluous, and boring. The NetBeans Platform gives developers a transparent, open source, extensible, and free framework that address all of these technical requirements. This book will guide you through all these topics and show you how you can apply the lessons learned in the context of a real application.

The central driver of the book is the creation of a complete sample application, chapter by chapter, throughout the length of this book. You will learn how to apply the key concepts in your own work environment, so that you will be able to build flexible, reliable, robust and scalable Swing applications yourself. At the end of the book, you will be comfortable creating similar applications yourself and you will know what to do when you get stuck.

This book helps you to create robust Swing applications by providing an in-depth coverage of all the features of the powerful NetBeans Platform 6.9



This is a step-by-step example-driven tutorial designed to be worked through chapter-wise. You'll be learning with the help of example code and screenshots that will ensure easier understanding. At the end, you will have developed a complete application on top of the NetBeans Platform.

Who this book is for

This book is written for developers who are comfortable with Java and Swing and who would like to use a framework as the basis of their Swing application. Zero knowledge of the NetBeans Platform is assumed. The reader is typically a developer (or a group of developers) wanting to create large, distributed, flexible Swing applications. The development team is typically large and distributed and members need to work independently on distinct parts of the application. The end user of the application typically needs to have the ability to install additional features at runtime, after the application has already been installed, without reinstalling the application.

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