Upgrading a Modular Gradle JavaFX Application

You might think, particularly given the order in which I have posted these blog posts, that I tackled the easiest application first when I decided to upgrade my JavaFX applications. But no. Because I like to live life on Hard Mode.

I spent two full days last week once again tackling the on-going tech debt I had with a Modular JavaFX application. And I won! Yay! So here's my experience report.

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Upgrading a Gradle JavaFX Application

I'm helping out a bit with an IntelliJ IDEA Live Stream on JavaFX, and I used that as an excuse to refresh my JavaFX knowledge. One of the things I did was make sure I upgraded all my existing applications to the latest versions of everything and make sure they work as expected.

I have what is now quite an old demo application, originally designed to showcase Java 8 features (watch the live demo and find out more). Since JavaFX was moved into the JDK in Java 8, I decided to use JavaFX as the UI. In fact, it's this demo that was the basis for all my later JavaFX applications, including the Spring Boot one.

I haven't done much with this for a loooong time, but it turns out I have been periodically updating dependencies and trying to make sure it all compiles. I highly recommend taking the time to do this at least once a year! It turns out that because I've been updating dependencies for the last 3-4 years that it wasn't that painful to bring it right up to date. In fact, I did it in less than 30 minutes!

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Creating JavaFX Applications

Hand drawing of a JavaFX Dashboard

This week we're doing a Live Stream on JavaFX, and I wanted to use that opportunity to refresh my JavaFX knowledge.

I wanted to investigate two areas in particular:

  • How do the changes in Java 11 (when JavaFX was moved out of the JDK) impact JavaFX applications?
  • How do I get a modern (Java 15) JavaFX application working as expected in IntelliJ IDEA (using either Maven or Gradle as the build tool)?

I now have six different applications that showcase JavaFX! And... they all have slightly different issues... sorry, I mean "subtleties around the best way to run them". Yes.

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