swing Repeat a UI task at a fixed interval


Example

Updating the state of a Swing component must happen on the Event Dispatch Thread (the EDT). The javax.swing.Timer triggers its ActionListener on the EDT, making it a good choice to perform Swing operations.

The following example updates the text of a JLabel each two seconds:

//Use a timer to update the label at a fixed interval
int delay = 2000;
Timer timer = new Timer( delay, e -> {
  String revertedText = new StringBuilder( label.getText() ).reverse().toString();
  label.setText( revertedText );
} );
timer.start(); 

A complete runnable example which uses this Timer is given below: the UI contains a label, and the text of the label will be reverted each two seconds.

import javax.swing.*;
import java.awt.*;

public final class RepeatTaskFixedIntervalExample {
  public static void main( String[] args ) {
    EventQueue.invokeLater( () -> showUI() );
  }
  private static void showUI(){
    JFrame frame = new JFrame( "Repeated task example" );
    JLabel label = new JLabel( "Hello world" );

    //Use a timer to update the label at a fixed interval
    int delay = 2000;
    Timer timer = new Timer( delay, e -> {
      String revertedText = new StringBuilder( label.getText() ).reverse().toString();
      label.setText( revertedText );
    } );
    timer.start();

    frame.add( label, BorderLayout.CENTER );
    frame.pack();
    frame.setDefaultCloseOperation( WindowConstants.EXIT_ON_CLOSE );
    frame.setVisible( true );
  }
}