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These ladies know all about dragging. Work it, girl!


Drag related attributes

Shapes and Groups have the following attributes that allow them to be dragged and that control how they can be dragged.


Whether the node can be dragged. Default: false.


Whether the node can only be dragged horizontally (HORIZONTAL), vertically (VERTICAL) or in both directions (NONE). Default: NONE.

Hand-point.png DragConstraint Javadoc Hand-point.png Drag Constraints demo Hand-point.png Slider demo


Restricts the node's location to a rectangular region. Default: null (no restrictions.)

Hand-point.png Slider demo Hand-point.png DragBounds Javadoc


Circle c = new Circle(20);
c.setDragBounds(new DragBounds(x1, y1, x2, y2));


If you need more exotic drag behavior, you can override the getDragContraints method (in Shape or Group) and return your own DragConstraintEnforcer. The default DragConstraintEnforcer enforces the rules defined by the dragBounds and dragConstraint attributes.

DragConstraintEnforcer must implement two methods:

startDrag is called when the drag operation starts. It receives the DragContext which contains all the info you may need. adjust is called after every drag move event. It receives the difference between the location where the drag started (i.e. initial mouse click or touch event) and the current location as a Point2D with (dx,dy) in "local coordinates". To restrict the node's movement, simply adjust (dx,dy) of the specified Point2D. (See DragContext below for details.)

See Custom Drag Constraints demo for some examples, e.g. snapping to a grid, restricting the location to a set of fixed points and restricting the location to a circular region.

Note that the API related to dragging is still in flux. We intend to add setDragConstraints (so that you don't have to override getDragConstraints), add more drag constraint primitives and make them serializable. We may also refactor the dragBounds and dragConstraint properties and integrate them with this mechanism.

Hand-point.png DragConstraintEnforcer Javadoc Hand-point.png Custom Drag Constraints demo

Drag Events

To listen for drag events, register one or more drag event handlers on a Node:

The drag events contain drag related information via the DragContext.

Hand-point.png Draggable Shapes demo Hand-point.png Mouse Event demo


The DragContext maintains information during a Drag operation of a Node.

Some values are defined in "global coordinates" (a.k.a. "canvas coordinates" or "viewport coordinates"), e.g. the raw canvas event (x,y) values are defined in pixels relative to the top-left corner of the canvas.

On the other hand, "local coordinates" are specific to a node's parent. E.g. the X,Y location of a node is defined relative to the top-left corner of the parent node.

To convert between local and global coordinates, you'd need to concatenate the Transform of the nodes ancestors, all the way down to the parent node (see DragContext.getLocalToGlobal). Converting from global to local coordinates requires the inverse of that Transform (see DragContext.getGlobalToLocal.)

Function Meaning
Returns the (x,y) coordinates at the start of the drag operation (in global/canvas coordinates.)
Returns the (x,y) of the last drag move (in global/canvas coordinates.)
Returns (dx,dy) between dragStart coordinates and current event coordinates (i.e. (eventX - dragstartX, eventY - dragStartY) in global/canvas coordinates.)
getGlobalToLocal Returns the Transform that can be used to convert global/canvas coordinates to local coordinates (i.e. within the context of the node's parent.) This is the inverse of the localToGlobal transform.
getLocalToGlobal Returns the Transform that can be used to convert local coordinates (i.e. within the context of the node's parent) to global/canvas coordinates. This is the inverse of the globalToLocal transform.
getLocalAdjusted Returns (dx,dy) in local coordinates, adjusted by the DragConstraintEnforcer.
getNode Returns the node being dragged as an IPrimitive.
getDragConstraints Returns the DragConstraintEnforcer that adjusts the node location during a drag operation.

Hand-point.png DragContext Javadoc

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