VocabHunter helps learners of foreign languages find vital new vocabulary to study.
Clone or download
Fetching latest commit…
Cannot retrieve the latest commit at this time.



Build Status Code Coverage SonarCloud Latest Release Twitter Follow


VocabHunter is a system to help learners of foreign languages. The best place to go for information about VocabHunter is the project website: vocabhunter.github.io.

To get all the latest news about VocabHunter including announcements of new releases, follow @vocabhunterapp on Twitter.



You will need Java 8 to build and run VocabHunter. You can download it from the Oracle Website. Everything else, including Gradle, will be downloaded by the build process.

VocabHunter is built for Java 8. For more information on the ongoing work to adapt to newer versions of Java, see the Java 9 and Java 10 section below.

How To Run VocabHunter

Go to the download page of the website to get the latest release of VocabHunter. Alternatively, you can run the development version from the command line as follows:

$ ./gradlew :gui:run

How to Use VocabHunter

Do you want to use VocabHunter to help you to learn a foreign language? You'll find everything you need to know to get you started in the guide How to Use VocabHunter.

How To Build VocabHunter

You can build the entire system with the following command:

$ ./gradlew clean build

How To Build An Installable Bundle

VocabHunter is distributed as an installable bundle, with everything the user needs packed into the file. On Mac this is a .dmg file, on Windows an .exe installer and on Linux a .deb package. On Windows you need to install Inno Setup.

You can launch the following command to create the bundle:

$ ./gradlew clean build jfxNative

When the build is complete, you will find the bundle file in the directory package/build/jfx/native.

How To Run The GUI Test

By default the GUI test runs as part of the standard Gradle build, in headless mode. If you'd like to run the GUI test in a non-headless mode so that you can see what is happening, use the following command:

$ ./gradlew :gui:test --tests io.github.vocabhunter.gui.main.GuiTest --rerun-tasks -PnoHeadless

Using the OpenJDK

VocabHunter works well if you choose the OpenJDK 8 instead of the Oracle JDK. If you choose the OpenJDK you may find you need to install JavaFX separately. For example, on Ubuntu 16.04 you can install the OpenJDK 8 and JavaFX as follows:

$ sudo apt-get install openjdk-8-jdk
$ sudo apt-get install openjfx

Java 9 and Java 10

VocabHunter is built for Java 8. However work has started to adapt the software for Java 9 and Java 10. You can find more details of this in the associated milestone and the experimental JDK9 branch.

Technical Articles

If you'd like to know more about how VocabHunter works and the technologies used to build it, take a look at the following articles that explore various aspects of the implementation:

  • Read (Almost) Any Document in Java (VocabHunter Blog) - VocabHunter uses Apache Tika to read documents in a wide variety of formats ranging from Microsoft Word through to PDF. This article explains how it is done.
  • How JavaFX was used to build a desktop application (King Tech Blog) - A detailed look at several important features of JavaFX using VocabHunter as an example.
  • Migrating to JUnit 5 (VocabHunter Blog) - How the VocabHunter project was updated to use JUnit 5 for testing. This article explains the changes that were made, the problems that were encountered and how they were solved.
  • Dependency Injection in JavaFX (VocabHunter Blog) - How to Gluon Ignite and Google Guice are used for the Dependency Injection in VocabHunter.
  • User Interface Testing with TestFX (VocabHunter Blog) - A guide to automating user interface tests using TestFX. VocabHunter includes a complete automated GUI test suite and here you can learn how it works.
  • Building a JavaFX Search Bar (VocabHunter Blog) - How the user interface for the VocabHunter search bar works with details of the use of ControlsFX and FontAwesomeFX in giving the bar a distinctive style.
  • VocabHunter – A tool for learners of foreign languages (King Tech Blog) - An introduction to some of the technologies being used in VocabHunter.