Wednesday, 3 February 2016

JDeveloper Features: Application Navigator

Now with our introduction to JDeveloper, we can move ahead with each of the frequently used features of this tool.

First thing we will discuss about the left panel of this tool. This is known as Application Navigator.

Application Navigator

When we look into this panel for the first time, we'll see two options there, New Application and Open Application.

If you click on the New Application button, you will be provided with a window to select the application template and you have to choose according to your requirement. In our case, we'll start with a Fusion Web Application,

In this window, we've to provide a name for our application. For now, we can go with the default value provided by the tool. We can also select a directory to store the application files and configurations. Next thing we need to provide is the package name. You can provide a desired package name here.

One thing, I want to discuss here is that, an application in JDeveloper consists of different projects. Initially it comes with two different projects Model and ViewController but according to the requirement we are free to add as many projects as we want. We'll discuss this in our subsequent discussions. For now, we are going with the default.

When we are done with all the stuffs, we can move to the next window to provide details of our Model project.

In this window we have to provide a project name and as earlier we are going with the default value, same for the directory as well.
Now, we have to choose the technology we want to use in our model project. By default ADF Business Components and Java is selected. If you want to choose other values, you can choose as well. Choosing the right technologies will help you with the UI and Component Browser. Because, every technology has its specific set of libraries associated with it.
We are going with the default value here.

Now, click on the Next button to move to the next window.

I think, this window is self explanatory and any Java Developer familiar with build tools or IDE can understand these settings. So, moving to the next window.

This time we are dealing with the View Controller project which basically is responsible for UI rendering. We provide the Project name and the directory to store the application files and then we are moving ahead with the technology selection.

Here you can see by default the list is pre-populated with some values and those cannot be changed. Well, you can try to shuttle between the technologies if you want. You will notice that for some technologies, you are provided some extra values.

Let me explain this to you.

For example if you add ADF Swing, you will get Swing/AWT by default and if you remove Swing/AWT, by default ADF Swing will be removed from the list. This happens because, ADF is built on top of multiple technologies to facilitate the development. So, if you choose any ADF component, you will get the base technology into the list and if you remove the base technology, you will loose the ADF library you want to use.

For our case, we are using ADF Faces and ADF Page Flows, which are dependent of JSF and XML which in turn are dependent on JSP and Servlet and XML. In turn JSP and Servlet depend on Java and HTML. So, all these technologies are selected for you.

Similar thing happened when we had the Model project configuration. We had ADF Business Components which depends on Java. So, Java appeared in the list.

Key point to remember: If you are selecting a technology, you are bound to include the depending technologies.

Well, that was all about the projects and technology selection. Move to the next to provide values for package, source directory and output directory and click on Finish button.

Wait for sometime for JDeveloper to create the necessary files and configurations. After this is complete, you will see in the editor window something like Application Overview. Well, we'll look into this later. Let's concentrate on the Application Navigator panel.

This is the application navigator window we'll work with. If you closed this window by chance, you can open this in the View menu. It comes Under View -> Application Navigator, as shown below.

Now, let's look into each part of Application Navigator.

In the top, you have a dropdown to select the application you want to work. Next you will see the Projects associated with the selected applications.

This window facilitates you with different project files. You can see that there are two projects in this view, Model and ViewController. These are the basic projects we'll be dealing with. We can also check that many files have been generated for us automatically. Basically this is the basic structure of an ADF Application. We'll look into each of this section later. Let's move into the second section of Application Navigator.

The next section is Application Resources,
This section gives you access to the different resources used by your application. You may be using database connection, file system resources, server connections. These all are shown in Connections directory.
In the descriptors, we can find different project descriptor files.
When we'll be dealing with these, we'll look into this section in detail.

Next section is Data Controls.
This is empty for now. We'll look into this part when we'll work with the model project.

And the last section of Application Navigator, Recently Opened Files

As the name suggests, this section shows the latest used files.

Well, that's all the sections Application Navigator shows you. Each of these panels can be expanded or collapsed for convenient view purpose.

That was all about the Application Navigator of JDeveloper.

In our next section, we'll look into other features of JDeveloper.

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