Is it mandatory to use the GUI designer to create a ToolWindow?

The example of a plugin using a ToolWindow provided in the "samples: folder of the IntelliJ source code Community Eidtion uses the GUI designer to create the example side toolbar.

As a side effect of using the GUI deisgner, form files are of course  created but also antoher file , in the .idea folder,  an XML  file with the name "uiDesigner.xml" also appears.

I have to assume that the IntelliJ framework gets needed info from this file so that the toolbar can be created and placed on the IDE.

The question I have is, is this the way is it must be done, you have to use the  GUI designer? Does the IntelliJ framework HAVE to have the uiDesigner.xml (or some other files generated automatically? as a side effect of using the GUI designer?).

I was trying to re-write the example plugin for the purpose of throughly understanding how it worked. I can rewite the GUI without the GuiDesigner, but then there's this issue of what appears to be  .xml config files in the folder nameded ".idea" and whether  those are absolutely needed by the IntelliJ framework because that's just how it's done and there is no other way.

Hope this was clear. I want to write the GUI parts of  my plugin "by hand" , but it's not  clear that's even permitted.

1 comment

Hello,

The uiDesigner.xml is part of your project file, it contains your local UI
Designer settings. The project files are not distributed with your plugin
and not needed by IntelliJ IDEA at runtime.

You can create toolwindows or any other parts of your plugin UI without using
the UI Designer.

The example of a plugin using a ToolWindow provided in the "samples:
folder of the IntelliJ source code Community Eidtion uses the GUI
designer to create the example side toolbar.

As a side effect of using the GUI deisgner, form files are of course
created but also antoher file , in the .idea folder,  an XML  file
with the name "uiDesigner.xml" also appears.

I have to assume that the IntelliJ framework gets needed info from
this file so that the toolbar can be created and placed on the IDE.

The question I have is, is this the way is it must be done, you have
to use the  GUI designer? Does the IntelliJ framework HAVE to have the
uiDesigner.xml (or some other files generated automatically? as a side
effect of using the GUI designer?).

I was trying to re-write the example plugin for the purpose of
throughly understanding how it worked. I can rewite the GUI without
the GuiDesigner, but then there's this issue of what appears to be
.xml config files in the folder nameded ".idea" and whether  those are
absolutely needed by the IntelliJ framework because that's just how
it's done and there is no other way.

Hope this was clear. I want to write the GUI parts of  my plugin "by
hand" , but it's not  clear that's even permitted.


--
Dmitry Jemerov
Development Lead
JetBrains, Inc.
http://www.jetbrains.com/
"Develop with Pleasure!"


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