User Preferences

Genuine leverages the Preferences API provided by Java by adding infrastructure to easily set up a preferences dialog with individual preference pages. This infrastrucure contains of a preferences module and a preferences service.

The preferences dialog and the preferences service are set up only if the preferences module is added to the application configuration data. Here is an example of how this module may be configured:

<module id="PreferencesModule" class="net.sf.genuine.preferences.PreferencesModule">
    <property key="PreferencesRoot" value="net/sf/genuine/example/crm/"/>
    <propertyset key="PreferencesPages">
      <propertysetvalue value="net.sf.genuine.preferences.general.AppearancePreferencesPage"/>
    <menu id="">
      <menuitem id="preferences" separator="infront"/>
    <service interface="net.sf.genuine.preferences.PreferencesService"/>
    <visualcomponent id="preferences.component" modal="true">
      <size width="600" height="400"/>

You may customize this configuration data by changing the position of the menu item and by changing the size of the preferences dialog. Two properties are shown; both of them are mandatory:

All preferences pages have to inherit from the abstract class PreferencesPage. This class is based on JPanel so that you may create any kind of GUI to visualize your preferences. You should create a preferences page for each set of related preferences. The preferences dialog shows all defined preferences pages and allows the user to switch between them. Each preferences page is responsible to restore its current preferences settings and store any changes into a given Preferences object.

A preferences page is identified by a path, for example "general/appearance". Genuine adds this identification path to the root node path given in the configuration data to determine the Preferences node that corresponds to a preferences page.

To check a preference inside your code, you should use the preferences service to fetch the appropriate Preferences instance. Because you cannot get a reference to a PreferencesPage object, you might provide static methods in your classes as in this example:

 * The identification path for this preferences page. Use it to get the
 * preferences object from outside this class using the PreferencesService.
public static final String IDENTIFICATION_PATH = "general/appearance";

 * Key for the preference setting that controls whether text labels are shown
 * in the tool bar.
 public static final String PREF_TOOLBAR_BUTTONS = "toolbarButtons";

 public static final int PREF_TOOLBAR_BUTTONS_ICONS = 0;
 public static final int PREF_TOOLBAR_BUTTONS_TEXT = 1;
 public static final int PREF_TOOLBAR_BUTTONS_ICONSTEXT = 2;

  * Returns the currently set preference for toolbar buttons by querying the
  * preferences service as long as that service has been created and registered by
  * the preferences module. Otherwise, the default preference setting is returned.
  * @return A integer that encodes the preference. See the constants of this class.
public static int getToolbarButtonsPreference(ServiceBroker serviceBroker) {

  PreferencesService service = (PreferencesService)
  if (service == null) {

  Preferences preferences = service.getPreferences(IDENTIFICATION_PATH);
  int result = preferences.getInt(PREF_TOOLBAR_BUTTONS, PREF_TOOLBAR_BUTTONS_ICONS);

  return result;

Genuine supplies some default preferences pages that may be added to every application. These classes may serve as examples of how preferences should be stored and restored by a preferences page. These preferences pages are: