How drop GEF editors figures in the outside world

In a Gef editor I want to let the users drag and drop figures (== model objects) to an other custom view available in my tool’s perspective.

Adding a DragSource with my own drag transfer on my GEF editor figure canvas allows that. But as a side effect, and I don’t want this side effect, this disable the possibility to move the figures INSIDE the editor using drag and drop.

After investigations I found this post on eclipse forums. The solution is acceptable but not perfect. Thus I investigated deeper and came to the following pure SWT snippet that explains why we have this behavior: MouseMove events (the ones used by gef to support dragging INSIDE the editor) are no more fired once a drag source has been added:

import org.eclipse.swt.dnd.DND;
import org.eclipse.swt.dnd.DragSource;
import org.eclipse.swt.dnd.DragSourceEvent;
import org.eclipse.swt.dnd.DragSourceListener;
import org.eclipse.swt.dnd.FileTransfer;
import org.eclipse.swt.dnd.Transfer;
import org.eclipse.swt.widgets.Display;
import org.eclipse.swt.widgets.Shell;

public class SwtTest {
public static void main(String[] args) {
final Display display = new Display();
final Shell shell = new Shell(display);

shell.addMouseMoveListener(new MouseMoveListener() {

public void mouseMove(MouseEvent e) {
System.out.println("Mouse move");
DragSourceListener dragListener = new DragSourceListener() {

public void dragFinished(DragSourceEvent event) {


public void dragSetData(DragSourceEvent event) {


public void dragStart(DragSourceEvent event) {

DragSource dragSource = new DragSource(shell, DND.DROP_COPY | DND.DROP_MOVE);
dragSource.setTransfer(new Transfer[] { FileTransfer.getInstance() });

while (!shell.isDisposed()) {
if (!display.readAndDispatch())

I guess this is the normal behavior fro man SWT point of view.

As a side note I would be interested for a solution to this issue other that the one proposed on Eclipse forum consisting in activating my DragSource only if a given condition is met such as Shift is pressed (this is done in a DragSourceListener.dragStart method by setting event.doit to false.


One thought on “How drop GEF editors figures in the outside world

  1. Pingback: Tweets that mention How drop GEF editors figures in the outside world « Manuel Selva’s Eclipse blog --

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