Part 4 - Editing and Removing Addresses

Explains how to add edit and remove functionality.

Now we look at ways to modify the contents of contacts stored in the address book.


We now have an address book that not only holds contacts in an organized manner, but also allows navigation. It would be convenient to include edit and remove functions so that a contact’s details can be changed when needed. However, this requires a little improvement, in the form of enums. We defined two modes: AddingMode and NavigationMode, but they were not defined as enum values. Instead, we enabled and disabled the corresponding buttons manually, resulting in multiple lines of repeated code.

Here we define the Mode enum with three different values:

  • NavigationMode,

  • AddingMode, and

  • EditingMode.

Defining the AddressBook Class

The addressbook.h file is updated to contain the Mode enum:

Mode = { NavigationMode, AddingMode, EditingMode }

We also add two new slots, editContact() and removeContact(), to our current list of public slots.

def editContact():
def removeContact():

In order to switch between modes, we introduce the updateInterface() function to control the enabling and disabling of all QPushButton objects. We also add two new push buttons, editButton and removeButton, for the edit and remove functions mentioned earlier.

<Code snippet "tutorials/addressbook/part4/addressbook.h:updateInterface() declaration" not found>            ...
editButton = QPushButton()
removeButton = QPushButton()            ...
currentMode = Mode()

Lastly, we declare currentMode to keep track of the enum’s current mode.

Implementing the AddressBook Class

We now implement the mode-changing features of the address book. The editButton and removeButton are instantiated and disabled by default. The address book starts with zero contacts in memory.

editButton = QPushButton(tr("Edit"))
removeButton = QPushButton(tr("Remove"))

These buttons are then connected to their respective slots, editContact() and removeContact(), and we add them to buttonLayout1.

connect(editButton, QPushButton.clicked,
        self, AddressBook::editContact)
connect(removeButton, QPushButton.clicked,
        self, AddressBook::removeContact)            ...

The editContact() function stores the contact’s old details in oldName and oldAddress, before switching the mode to EditingMode. In this mode, the submitButton and cancelButton are both enabled, hence, the user can change the contact’s details and click either button.

<Code snippet "tutorials/addressbook/part4/addressbook.cpp:editContact() function" not found>

The submitContact() function has been divided in two with an if-else statement. We check currentMode to see if it’s in AddingMode. If it is, we proceed with our adding process.

<Code snippet "tutorials/addressbook/part4/addressbook.cpp:submitContact() function beginning" not found>            ...
<Code snippet "tutorials/addressbook/part4/addressbook.cpp:submitContact() function part1" not found>

Otherwise, we check to see if currentMode is in EditingMode. If it is, we compare oldName with name. If the name has changed, we remove the old contact from contacts and insert the newly updated contact.

<Code snippet "tutorials/addressbook/part4/addressbook.cpp:submitContact() function part2" not found>

If only the address has changed (i.e., oldAddress is not the same as address), we update the contact’s address. Lastly, we set currentMode to NavigationMode. This is an important step as it re-enables all the disabled push buttons.

To remove a contact from the address book, we implement the removeContact() function. This function checks to see if the contact exists in contacts.

<Code snippet "tutorials/addressbook/part4/addressbook.cpp:removeContact() function" not found>

If it does, we display a QMessageBox , to confirm the removal with the user. Once the user has confirmed, we call previous() to ensure that the user interface shows another contact, and we remove the contact using QMap ‘s remove() function. As a courtesy, we display a QMessageBox to inform the user. Both the message boxes used in this function are shown below:


Updating the User Interface

We mentioned the updateInterface() function earlier as a means to enable and disable the push buttons depending on the current mode. The function updates the current mode according to the mode argument passed to it, assigning it to currentMode before checking its value.

Each of the push buttons is then enabled or disabled, depending on the current mode. The code for AddingMode and EditingMode is shown below:

<Code snippet "tutorials/addressbook/part4/addressbook.cpp:update interface() part 1" not found>

For NavigationMode, however, we include conditions within the parameters of the setEnabled() function. This is to ensure that editButton and removeButton are enabled when there is at least one contact in the address book; nextButton and previousButton are only enabled when there is more than one contact in the address book.

<Code snippet "tutorials/addressbook/part4/addressbook.cpp:update interface() part 2" not found>

By setting the mode and updating the user interface in the same function, we avoid the possibility of the user interface getting out of sync with the internal state of the application.

Example project @