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This document is a work in progress.

This topic describes the comparingReferences sample plugin that creates a custom inspection of Java code. In addition, the sample plugin contains a JUnit-based test. Basing on this information, you can develop your own plugins using similar techniques.

About Code Inspections

IntelliJ IDEA provides tools designed for static code analysis (so called code instections) that help you maintain and clean up your code without actually executing it. In IntelliJ IDEA you will find a set of built-in inspections that are grouped by their goals and sense. For more information about code inspections, see Inspecting Source Code in IntelliJ IDEA Web Help.
You can create custom inspections through the IntelliJ IDEA interface (see Creating Own Inspections ). Alternatively, you can develop a plugin to implement a custom inspection.

Used Techniques

The comparingReferences sample plugin illustrates the use of the following techniques:

Sample Plugin

The comparingReferences sample plugin is available in the <%IDEA project folder%>/community/samples/comparingReferences> directory.
When launched, this plugin adds the '==' or '!=' instead of 'equals()' item to the Probable bugs node in the IDEA Inspections list .

Running the Plugin

To run the sample plugin

  1. Start IntelliJ IDEA and open the comparingReferences plugin project saved into the <%IDEA project folder%>/community/samples/comparingReferences directory.
  2. Ensure that the project settings are valid for your environment. If necessary, modify the project settings.
    To view or modify the project settings, on the toolbar, click , and then complete the Project Structure dialog box that opens.
  3. Run the plugin by choosing the Run | Run on the main menu.
    If necessary, change the Run/Debug Configurations .

How It Works?

The plugin inspects your code opened in the IDEA editor or the code you are typing. The plugin highlights the code fragments where two variables of the reference type are separated by == or != and proposes to replace this code fragment with *.equals():

In this example, the code:

will be replaced with the code:

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