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Tip of the Day
Language: Client Scripting
Expertise: Beginner
May 5, 2000

Switching Between Frames

Question:
I'm building an application that has several different frames. Each has a button that when pressed should bring up a new frame and close the calling frame. How can I display the new frame and close the calling frame?

Answer:
Creating a new frame is as simple as following the same steps you followed when creating the original frame. Closing the calling frame requires a little bit of care. You should make sure you create the new frame before closing and disposing of the old frame. One way of doing this is to hide the old frame, create and display the new frame, and then dispose of the old frame.

The following code demonstrates how to do this. It creates a frame with an exit button and a button for creating new frames. It registers an ActionListener with the exit button to exit the entire application. The ActionListener it registers with the new frame button takes care of hiding the old frame, creating the new frame, and disposing of the old frame. Keep in mind that an alternative to creating a new frame is to reuse the old frame, simply replacing its contents with a new component panel.

import java.awt.*;
import java.awt.event.*;

public class Frames {

  public static class NewFrame extends Frame {
    int _id;
    Button _exitButton, _newFrameButton;

    public NewFrame(int id) {
      _id = id;
      _exitButton     = new Button("Exit");
      _newFrameButton = new Button("New Frame");

      addWindowListener(new WindowAdapter() {
          public void windowClosing(WindowEvent e) {
            Window window = e.getWindow();
            window.setVisible(false);
            window.dispose();
            System.exit(0);
          }
        });

      _exitButton.addActionListener(new ActionListener() {
          public void actionPerformed(ActionEvent e) {
            setVisible(false);
            dispose();
            System.exit(0);
          }
        });

      _newFrameButton.addActionListener(new ActionListener() {
          public void actionPerformed(ActionEvent e) {
            Frame frame;
            setVisible(false);
            frame = new NewFrame(_id + 1);
            frame.pack();
            frame.setVisible(true);
            dispose();
          }
        });

      setLayout(new FlowLayout());
      add(_exitButton);
      add(_newFrameButton);
      setTitle("Frame #" + id);
    }
  }

  public static final void main(String[] args) {
    NewFrame frame;

    frame = new NewFrame(0);
    frame.pack();
    frame.setVisible(true);
  }
}

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