IntroAndroidDevNetBeans

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Contributed by: [[AmitKumarSaha| Amit Kumar Saha]]
Contributed by: [[AmitKumarSaha| Amit Kumar Saha]]
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'''Note that this wiki page describes an old version of Android plugin. Read more about current version at [http://www.nbandroid.org/] and about installation and first steps in [http://kenai.com/projects/nbandroid/pages/Home project wiki]. --Radim Kubacki on May 22, 2011'''
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In this article, I shall show you how you can start with developing for the [http://code.google.com/android/ Android] platform using NetBeans using [http://kenai.com/projects/nbandroid/ nbandroid].
In this article, I shall show you how you can start with developing for the [http://code.google.com/android/ Android] platform using NetBeans using [http://kenai.com/projects/nbandroid/ nbandroid].
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Revision as of 12:47, 22 May 2011

Introducing Android Development with NetBeans

Updated on 26 November, 2008 for NetBeans 6.5 and Android SDK 1.0 Release 1

Contributed by: Amit Kumar Saha

Note that this wiki page describes an old version of Android plugin. Read more about current version at [1] and about installation and first steps in project wiki. --Radim Kubacki on May 22, 2011


In this article, I shall show you how you can start with developing for the Android platform using NetBeans using nbandroid.

Contents


Prerequisites

Before you can get started with developing Android applications, you are advised to acquaint yourself with:

  • The Android Framework
  • Overview of writing applications for Android

Please refer to the Android SDK documentation for information on the above.

You will need:


Installing the Android plugins for NetBeans

The nbandroid project provides the plugins for Android development on NetBeans. There are 3 possible ways to install the plugin:

  • PREFERRED Using nbandroid update center
  • Download and install NBMs. Those are available for download from here. Once downloaded, install all the plugins by going to Tools > Plugins > Downloaded.
  • You could also clone the project's mercurial repository and build the module suite yourself and then install them. (How?)



Adding the Android platform

After you have installed the plugins,you have to add your Android platform by going to Tools->Java Platforms:

Image:android-plat_IntroAndroidDevNetBeans.png

Point it to your Android SDK location:

Image:android-plat-1_IntroAndroidDevNetBeans.png

If you're having error "A platform target has to be selected" like on picture below, make sure, that you've downloaded SDKs by running tools/android update tool (see [2]). Image:android-plat-2_IntroAndroidDevNetBeans.png


Creating a new Android project

Now, go to File->New Projects. You should now see a new entry for Android:

Image:new-project_IntroAndroidDevNetBeans.png

Go ahead with the default application name (or change it!)

Image:new-project-1_IntroAndroidDevNetBeans.png

You should see a new project structure as below:

Image:project-structure_IntroAndroidDevNetBeans.png

The file MainActivity.java is as shown below:


/*
 * To change this template, choose Tools | Templates
 * and open the template in the editor.
 */

package org.me.hellodroid;

import android.app.Activity;
import android.os.Bundle;

/**
 *
 * @author amit
 */
public class MainActivity extends Activity {

    /** Called when the activity is first created. */
    @Override
    public void onCreate(Bundle icicle) {
        super.onCreate(icicle);
        // ToDo add your GUI initialization code here        
    }

}

As described in the Android SDK documentation, an Android application is organized as a set of activities. The file MainActivity.java that has been generated is the main activity class for this application.


Running your project

Now, build and Run your project as you would do with any other NetBeans project. Your project builds successfully and the Android emulator boots up:

Image:run-default_IntroAndroidDevNetBeans.png

Where is our Hello World?

Just add

setContentView(R.layout.main);

to the above file in place of

// ToDo add your GUI initialization code here

This should have been generated by the plugin, because the main.xml containing the main view was generated.


Alternatively we can do the following.

We shall now add support to the skeleton code to display the text- Hello, Android. Add the following to the above file in place of the "// ToDo add your GUI initialization code here":

TextView tv = new TextView(this);
tv.setText("Hello, Android");
setContentView(tv);

You will notice that the IDE complains- "Cannot find symbol". This is because we need to import the class TextView. Its easy with NetBeans. Just click on the yellow bulb and select "Add import for.."

Image:import-tip_IntroAndroidDevNetBeans.png

The file should now look like:

package org.me.androidapplication1;

import android.app.Activity;

import android.os.Bundle;
import android.widget.TextView;


/**
 *
 * @author amit
 */
public class MainActivity extends Activity {

    /** Called when the activity is first created. */
    @Override
    public void onCreate(Bundle icicle) {
        super.onCreate(icicle);
        
       TextView tv = new TextView(this);
       tv.setText("Hello, Android");
       setContentView(tv);
    }

}

Now, run the project again

Image:run_IntroAndroidDevNetBeans.png


Prevent Selection of Target on Each Run

When you run your project you are given a dialog asking which android device or emulator you would like to use. This can get annoying after several compile/run iterations. To set a default target, right click on the project name, select Properties. Select Run. Click on Automatic and set the preferred AVD. If you do not set the preferred AVD, NetBeans will continue to ask you at each run instance.


Conclusion

The 'nbandroid' project is just getting started with plenty of opportunities to contribute. Join in at http://kenai.com/projects/nbandroid/

References

  1. Google Android Documentation
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