Kotlin: Create menu

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Postby Ursego » 26 Dec 2019, 15:19

@ If res/menu directory doesn't exist: right click "res" directory > New > Directory > enter the directory name "menu" > OK.

@ Right click "menu" directory > New > File > enter the menu name "XXX_activity_menu.xml" (like "main_activity_menu.xml" if you are creating the menu for MainActivity) > OK > XML > OK > The menu designer opened.

@ Make its text this (the example creates a menu with one item; that item opens the Settings screen, described here; of course, you can customize according to your needs, and add more items):

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<?xml version="1.0" encoding="utf-8"?>
<menu xmlns:app="http://schemas.android.com/apk/res-auto"

        app:showAsAction="never" />

@ If you want to change the icon (or add icons to other menu items): switch the menu XML from Text to Design view > in Component Tree, click the menu item > Attributes > icon > click on the vertical line ("Pick a resource").

@ Add to the Activity, for which the menu is created:

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    override fun onCreateOptionsMenu(menu: Menu?): Boolean {
        (menu as MenuBuilder).setOptionalIconsVisible(true) // remove this line if your menu items don't have icons
        menuInflater.inflate(R.menu.main_activity_menu, menu) // change main_activity_menu to the actual name of your menu if it's different
        return super.onCreateOptionsMenu(menu)
    override fun onOptionsItemSelected(item: MenuItem?): Boolean {
        when (item?.itemId) {
            R.id.<your menu item id> -> {
                val intent = Intent(this, PrefActivity::class.java) // change PrefActivity to the actual name of the activity the item opens
        return super.onOptionsItemSelected(item!!)


If you want to make a menu item visible (or invisible) in code depending on a runtime condition, do the following:

@ If the menu item must be invisible by default, then, when you define it in the menu XML file, add the following property to it:

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@ In the Activity, for which the menu is created, override the function onPrepareOptionsMenu(). In the following example, I show the menu item "Группа на ФБ (на русском)" (which means "FB Group (in Russian)") only if the current language is Russian (of course, you should change the condition to yours):

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    override fun onPrepareOptionsMenu(menu: Menu?): Boolean {
        if (AppPrefs.getString(PrefKey.LANG, this) == Lang.RUSSIAN) {
            val openFbGroupRuMenuItem = menu?.findItem(R.id.open_fb_group_ru)
            openFbGroupRuMenuItem!!.isVisible = true // or false if the menu item is invisible by default

        return super.onPrepareOptionsMenu(menu)
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