What's New in JFormDesigner 5.1

JFormDesigner 5.1 introduces several new features and enhancements. This topic describes some of the significant or more interesting changes. Please have a look at the change log for a complete list of changes.

NetBeans plug-in

The NetBeans plug-in fully integrates JFormDesigner into NetBeans 7.0 and later.

NetBeans plug-in

Java 7 support

Use diamond operator in generated source code if source compatibility is set to Java 7. Automatically use type parameter <String> for ComboBoxModel<E>, JComboBox<E>, ListModel<E> and JList<E> if model property is set.

JGoodies Forms 1.4 and 1.5 support

JGoodies FormLayout 1.4 and 1.5, which provides the new row gap "label component gap", are now supported.

GroupLayout design improved

The NetBeans team has made many improvements and fixes to the GroupLayout design in NetBeans 7.1, which are now incorporated into JFormDesigner.

JFDML persistence format for .jfd form files

New JFDML persistence format for .jfd form files. This is a compact, easy-to-merge and fast-to-load format. It is about 70% smaller than the XML format.

JFDML format (30 lines; 1 KB):
JFDML format

XML format (90 lines; 3 KB):
XML format

To change the persistence format of an existing form, open the form, select the "(form)" node in the Structure view and change the "Form file format" property in the Properties view. Or use the JFormDesigner command-line tool to convert the format of many forms.

Palette improved

The Palette has been improved:

  • Display multiple items per row if there is enough room.
  • New option "Item Names" in context menu to show only item icons.

Palette multi-column


Following options have been added to the Preferences:

  • New preferences page GridBagLayout supports specification of default properties for new GridBagLayout columns/rows.
  • Added Localization preferences option "Format used for generated keys".
  • Added Java code generator preferences options "Variable modifiers" and "Event handler modifiers".

Batch convert forms

(Eclipse, NetBeans and IntelliJ IDEA plug-ins only)

You can now convert all forms contained in containers (folders, packages, project, etc.). The improved Convert dialog allows you to select the forms that you want convert.

Batch convert forms

NetBeans 7.1 form conversion

The NetBeans forms converter now supports forms created with NetBeans 7.1 that use GridBagLayout gaps or FlowLayout.alignOnBaseline.


Runtime library license changed

Changed license of runtime library from BSD-3-Clause to BSD-2-Clause.