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Null Pointer Exception

Posted on 2000-04-06
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Last Modified: 2010-05-18
I have created a JPanel, which just happens to be a tab, though this is irrelevant. Inside the JPanel I have a JButton and a Canvas (This happenes to be a graphing program). If I overwrite "paintComponent(Graphics g)" and include the line "Graphics canvas_g = canvas.getGraphics()" I can draw, etc...If I put this line anywhere else, such as in a "draw()" function I get a "NullPointerException". Is there a reason why I can only get the graphics object for the canvas within the "paintComponent(Graphics g)" function (which, by the way, is used to re-draw the JPanel). [oh, I can also pass the canvas_g object to another function and then use it with no problem. I just can't call the getGraphics() function from another function.]
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Question by:streaks619
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Author Comment

by:streaks619
ID: 2691775
Oh, one more thing, the reason why I don't want to call it from the "paintComponent" function is that ideally the user would hit the button, which would then graph a specified function.

As it is now, the graph will be displayed whenever the panel is refreshed.
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Expert Comment

by:Yawgmoth
ID: 2692152
your best bet is to note where the nullpointer is being generated and to trace it from there
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Expert Comment

by:heyhey_
ID: 2692188
NEVER NEVER NEVER use getGraphics().

put all your rendering code inside paintComponent() and call repaint() when needed


(as you can see yourself, getGraphics is UNSAFE - it may return null Graphics object sometimes)
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Expert Comment

by:wizcool
ID: 2693026
I'm not sure, but you might have to add the line:
Graphics canvas_g= new Graphics();

before you call the 'getGraphics()'.

That is because 'getGraphics()' returns a pointer, and if there is no object 'canvas_g' created, that might cause a 'Null Pointer Exception'.
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Author Comment

by:streaks619
ID: 2693027
yes, but paintComponent is called whenever the Panel is repainted, which I cannot control. I want it only to be repainted when I press the button.
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Author Comment

by:streaks619
ID: 2693035
You cannot make a Graphics object using new Graphics(), graphics cannot be instantiated.
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Expert Comment

by:heyhey_
ID: 2693097
>> yes, but paintComponent is called whenever the Panel is repainted

well you SHOULD call panel.repaint() when you want it to repaint itself ... Java VM will call your paint() / paintComponent() with the appropriate Graphics object, when the system event Thread is free ...

as I already said NEVER, NEVER, NEVER use getGraphics().

I have used that method only once in my live - to implement a workaround over TERRIBLE java.awt.PopupMenu bug ... and I wouldn't use it if there was another possibility.
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Author Comment

by:streaks619
ID: 2693762
You are comfusing something. I have to use getGraphics, how else would I get the graphis object for the canvas?

Remember, paintComponent gets the graphics object for the panel, NOT  for the canvas.
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Accepted Solution

by:
heyhey_ earned 50 total points
ID: 2695701
I'm not confusing anything and my code does not throw NullPointerException. :)

once again - put all your rendering code inside paint() (for AWT components) or paintComponent() (Swing) and call repaint when needed.
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