JFileChooser : Java Glossary


A Swing component to ask the user to select a file or directory. The AWT (Advanced Windowing Toolkit) equivalent of JFileChooser is called FileDialog. By default it lets the user select files only, but you can setFileSelectionMode( JFileChooser.DIRECTORIES_ONLY ) or setFileSelectionMode( JFileChooser.FILES_AND_DIRECTORIES ).

When you do a JFileChooser.showOpenDialog it pops up a modal dialog box and returns JFileChooser. APPROVE_OPTION if all went ok. Then you can retrieve the selected file with JFileChooser.getSelectedFile().

Watch out. When you a feed a filter to JFileChooser, it wants as javax.swing.filechooser. FileFilter not a java.io.FilenameFilter. To control whether the user selects a file, directory or either, use setFileSelectionMode( int mode) with JFileChooser. FILES_ONLY, JFileChooser. DIRECTORIES_ONLY or JFileChooser. FILES_AND_DIRECTORIES.

JFileChooser only works in applications, signed JWS (Java Web Start) applications and signed Applets. If you intend to distribute your program as an unsigned Java Web Start application, then instead of using JFileChooser you should use the JWS classes FileOpenService and FileSaveService.

It lets the user create new directories as he navigates. It is embarrassingly slow code. Here is how you use it.

Learning More

Oracle’s Javadoc on JFileChooser class : available:
Oracle’s Javadoc on FileFilter class : available:
Oracle’s Javadoc on FileNameExtensionFilter class : available:

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