Greenfoot is a combination integrated development environment and framework for doing 2-dimensional graphics. It greatly simplifies doing graphics in Java, while simultaneously demonstrating objects and classes.


The Greenfoot package relies on the GreenFinch class, written by Michael Berry, a member of the Greenfoot team at the University of Kent. The API of this class is documented on our site.

The GreenFinch class is backed by the full Finch java package, and it is possible to use all of the capabilities of this package (including reading RSS feeds, and manipulating computer audio). Therefore, we also suggest you look through the regular Finch javadocs.

Compiling and Running Finch Programs

Linux-Only Configuration Instructions

1. Find greenfoot.defs (probably in /usr/share/greenfoot) and change the following line from:



bluej.vm.args=-Xincgc -Djava.library.path=.

2. Launch Greenfoot with sudo.

Opening the Greenfoot Project

1.  Download one of Greenfoot’s Finch packages and unzip it to a convenient directory.

2.  Double click on the project.greenfoot file to open it in Greenfoot.

3. Note that you will need Greenfoot v2.01 or higher for the Finch to work.

Running an Example

1.  Hit the Run button, ensure your Finch is plugged in.

Creating a New File

1.  Right-click on one of the actor classes to create a new object that will act in the world.  Select “New subclass…” and give the subclass an image and name.

Structure of the Package

The Finch Greenfoot package has the following folders:

Readme – Read this first!

finchstarter – A starter world set up to work with Finch.

finchdemo – A Greenfoot-built control panel that visualizes Finch sensor data and allows you to set all of the Finch’s outputs.

finchlight – A simple program demonstrating interaction of the motors, light sensors, and a graphical slider.

GreenFinchDoc – The documentation for the GreenFinch class.

javadocs – The documentation of the full Finch java package.

licenses – Licensing details.

Version Information

Version 1.1 compatibility fixes with Greenfoot’s Color library.

Version 1.0 is now available and has been successfully tested on Windows XP 32-bit, Windows 7 64-bit, Mac OS 10.6, and Ubuntu 10.04 with Greenfoot 2.0.1.