The File class is a true abstract representation of file and directory pathnames. This allows the File class to better support non-Unix platforms such as Windows, which has a rich pathname syntax involving drive letters, UNC share names, and multiple separator characters. The specification of class File prior to the JavaTM 2 Platform could not handle these cases because it was written in terms of simple string operations.
The following features were introduced in the
Fileclass in the Java 2 Platform, v1.2:
- The ability to create temporary files, and a simple delete-on-exit facility (the new methods createNewFile, createTempFile, and deleteOnExit);
- Conversion of abstract pathnames to URLs (the new method toURL);
- Access to the list of filesystem roots (the new method listRoots);
- Comparability (the new compareTo methods);
- Access to additional file attributes (the new methods isHidden, setLastModified, and setReadOnly); and
- A uniform set of methods that accept and return File objects rather than strings (the new methods getParentFile, getAbsoluteFile, getCanonicalFile, and listFiles, and the new interface FileFilter).