What I am trying to introduce here is a full fledged Java Instant messenger, which has all the features supplied by commercial messengers like Yahoo or MSN. Although it cannot compared to be in par with those messengers, it is an attempt by me to learn Advanced Java and JNI concepts. The challenges I faced here were often overcome by referring to numerous sites, which nearly zeroes in or completely solved the issues I faced at that point of time. It improved my learning curve and also believe would do the same to you too. Ofcourse, there are some bugs and glitches, which I hope you would excuse. Thanks to anyone who takes the pain to report them or even suggest better way of doing things to me.
Window/WinNT/Solaris(To run the chat server)
Windows/WINNT (For running the chat client)
JDK Ver1.3 or higher(Although I havent tested with lower versions of that)
1. Building the Server and Client framework code. The Server and Client use TCP sockets to communicate and a MESSAGE java object is passed across the server-clients. MESSAGE object is serialized and sent as a bytes through the TCP socket.
2. Building the SWING component. The Client bears all the complexities of java.Swing and puts few of the Swing components to the rubber test.The Server is a purely console based client as oppposed to Client. The Client uses Swing components extensively, the following are worth a mention. Userlist
- JTree whose L&F is similar to that of YAHOO's,which is updated on Client login,logout and status change.ChatDialog
- JFrame with JTextArea for typing a message and JEditorPane for displaying received messages. The reason why I chose JEditorPane is the ability to display HTML text. This helped me to easily add smileys and other HTML tags like FONT,IMG etc. Try all the YAHOO smileys here like
) etc and see the results.ConferenceDialog
- Similiar to ChatDialog and has a JList component in addition, to display the available users list.JWindow
- To display a splash screen. The picture was of course drawn by me. System Tray Icon
- To minimize the chat to the System tray was one of the primary features of an instant messenger. This was achieved using a JAWT call. The following of code complete with source is available in the following site, kudos to its creator.http://jeans.studentenweb.org/java/trayicon/trayicon.html
- Was achieved through a JNI call, which calls the Win API all FlashWindow(HWND,BOOLEAN) and a javax.swing.Timer to flash the window.
Steps to run
1. Unzip the contents of the zip to a folder. Make sure you have the following files in that directory.Talk2Me.jar
2. Go the directory and run the server first. The command is,java -classpath Talk2Me.jar Server
(To run the server doesn't need dll's and Server can run in any m/c WIN/SOLARIS provided it has JDK installed)
3. Now start the Client.javaw -jar Talk2Me.jar (WINDOWS only)
On most machines, just double clicking the JAR would invoke the program)
4. Give any username and password and make sure you give the right Server IP where the server is running, in the Login dialog. It can be valid names like localhost, 127.0.0.1, 172.22.11.88...etc.
I wrote this messenger purely to serve as a knowledge base to other programmers. Please refrain from using this messenger for commercial purposes or whatsoever. Anyone who wishes to modify the code to suit their own requirements, please seek my consent before doing so. Please make sure that you mail me the exact purpose why you want to modify the code.
That's it folks. I've tried my best to make my code understandable and ofcourse there is always more than one way to do anything and it would be helpful If you could suggest me a better way of doing things. Your comments and feedback are always welcome.
Thanks and Happy messaging.Alfred Jayaprakash