Explicación del subproceso de distribución de eventos de Java

I've recently started learning and exploring the basics of GUI programming in Java.

Having been programming for a while I have only done backend work or work and as a result the closest I've gotten to user interfaces is the command console (embarrassing I know).

I'm using Swing and as far as I can gather that means by extension I am also using AWT.

My question is based on this piece of code:

java.awt.EventQueue.invokeLater(new Runnable() {
    public void run() {
        new frame.setVisible(true);
} );

I have been researching this for a while as I wanted to fully understand this strange piece of code and have come across the term 'Event-Dispatching Thread' multiple times. Correct me if I'm wrong but as I understand it; it has to do with using multiple threads and how Java Swing interprets those threads. I gather as well that the above code is used to make sure all the threads are 'safe' before it creates the window, hence the invokeLater?

He leído que:

"You can only call methods that operate on the frame from the Event-Dispatching Thread"

and that only under certain circumstances can you call methods that operate on the frame from the main method.

Can somebody please clarify to me what exactly the Event-Dispatching Thread is?

How it relates to multiple threads of execution and how those threads are not safe to be called from the main method? Also why do we need this invokeLater?

Can we not just create the window as any other object?

I've hit a bit of a road block in my research as I'm not grasping these relations and ideas.

A side note is that I like to base my knowledge on in-depth understanding as I believe this leads to the best overall outcome and as a result the best programs. If I understand in-depth how something works then you can use the tips and tweaks effectively rather than just parroting them back in to code, so please don't be afraid to give me some extra in-depth explanations and broaden my knowledge.

Gracias por su atención.

preguntado el 27 de agosto de 11 a las 20:08

2 Respuestas

Al hilo de envío de eventos is a special thread that is managed by AWT. Basically, it is a thread that runs in an infinite loop, processing events.

Al java.awt.EventQueue.invokeLater y javax.swing.SwingUtilities.invokeLater methods are a way to provide code that will run on the event queue. Writing a UI framework that is safe in a multithreading environment is very difficult so the AWT authors decided that they would only allow operations on GUI objects to occur on a single special thread. All event handlers will execute on this thread and all code that modifies the GUI should also operate on this thread.

Now AWT does not usually check that you are not issuing GUI commands from another thread (The WPF framework for C# does do this), meaning it's possible to write a lot of code and be pretty much agnostic to this and not run into any problems. But this can lead to undefined behavior, so the best thing to do, is to always ensure that GUI code runs on the event dispatch thread. invokeLater provides a mechanism to do this.

A classic example is that you need to run a long running operation like downloading a file. So you launch a thread to perform this action then, when it is completed, you use invokeLater to update the UI. If you didn't use invokeLater and instead you just updated the UI directly, you might have a race condition and undefined behavior could occur.

Wikipedia tiene más información

Also, if you are curious why the AWT authors don't just make the toolkit multithreaded, aquí es un buen articulo.

Respondido 27 Abr '19, 16:04

My apologies for the late reply, I've been kept up with work. Your post has actually quite concisely answered an awful lot of my questions, so I'd like to thank you for that. Okay, so if I understand correctly then in order to operate on the GUI I should use the invokeLater() method with a runnable object and by doing this I can ensure I am always using the EDT? I also read about the SwingWorker class that is now officially supported. Would this class be considered to be superior to the invokeLater method or am I misunderstanding and they solve two different problems? - linuscash

There are a number of cases where you are guaranteed to already be executing on the EDT for example event handlers (ActionListeners, ClickListeners) so there is no need to use invokeLater from there. I think a SwingWorker is just a thread that has special mechanism to interact with the EDT (probably through invokeLater). So i would definitely use that if appropriate. - Lucas

@JavaTechnical it uses a standard multithreaded queueing approach using wait/notify to signal when new events arrive. This way it can avoid expensive polling, see: grepcode.com/file/repository.grepcode.com/java/root/jdk/openjdk/… - Lucas

@JavaTechnical well it waits until it gets a signal, signaling happens when an event is placed on the queue. One of the things that puts items on the queue is a native event, but things like invokeLater will put things on the queue also. - Lucas

Hi, the link to the Java blog post no longer leads to a blog post. Can you update your link, or post a link to some archived version of that post? - Alex W

EventDispatchThread (EDT) is special thread reserved only for Swing GUI and *Swing's related events e.g. create/change/update Swing JComponents, more for asked questions aquí y aquí

all output to the GUI from BackGround Tasks, Runnable#Thread debe estar envuelto en invokeLater (), from synchronized Objects into invokeAndWait();

contestado el 23 de mayo de 17 a las 15:05

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