Android: ‘Must Override a Superclass Method’ Errors

I’ve been working by myself on all of my Android projects and just recently I need ed to expand my workforce to beyond that just myself. Therefore I needed to make my first hire for my company Agilevent. In doing so I needed to get my code over to another developers machine and I ran into all kinds of problems.


The code is stored on GitHub in a private repository and the new developer had access. They had recently set up Eclipse and the ADT with Java 1.6. Everything was working golden. We could create a new project and everything worked fine. Except … when we tried to import the recently cloned GitHub project.

After importing Eclipse would report “Must Override a Superslass Method” on all kinds of methods all over the place (literally 86 different places in this one app).


After a ton of futzing around we found the problem. Eclipse was defaulting to Java 1.5 for the imported project. I’m learning more and more and more about Java and its idiosyncrasies every day. In Java 1.5 classes can only be decorated with @Override when overriding a superclass method. In Java 1.6 if you have classes implementing interface methods you can decorate them with @Override and everything’s golden. You cant do that in 1.5. AKA: The source of the errors.

So where to change it?

Choose Window –> Preferences –> Java –> Compiler and ensure 1.6 is selected in the Compiler Compliance Level. If that is set and you still have problems, then in the same window, choose “Configure Project Specific Settings …”, choose the project in the chooser, and enable the project specific settings checkbox and select 1.6 in the Compiler Compliance level.

Fun times. Now if I could only get those two hours back …

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  • Anil

    Thank you so much. Exactly the info that I was looking for. I spent couple of hours myself but am glad found your post. Worked like a charm.

  • Donn Felker

    No problem, I'm glad it helped!

    Sent from Android

  • Mark

    Thanks, it was the Configure Project Specific Settings …” . Why does it default to 1.5 I dont know!

  • Tarak

    Thanks a lot. Helped solved a problem which i was solving for long

  • Rien

    Thanks a lot

  • Keeshavah

    Thanks, very useful tip :-)

  • Vijai

    Thanks you. I lost 2 hours on this useless bug

  • droider

    Thiank you very much — this has saved a lot of my time.

  • the_gord

    One thing to add. I had this same problem, but when I checked the Menu you listed it was already set to 1.6! I discovered that each project has it’s own settings also, which can be found by right-clicking on the project and going to properties.

  • Xazen

    Thats what I was searching for after adding OpenFeintAPI to my Project! Thanks a lot!

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    tahnk dude

  • Devasiskunal11

    great ,

    Thanks donn.

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    Thank you! Not easy to spot for somebody new to Java .

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  • Anonymous

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  • Web Design Outsource

    It’s been a while to since this article was posted but i’m still glad to see it.

  • Guest

    Gracias, ya me estaba volviendo loco con este error.

  • Craig

    Fantastic! This was torturing me since I upgraded my Android SDK to version 4.0. I saw these errors when importing the ApiDemos project. Now I know why.

  • Toby Muresianu

    Glad you saved me those two hours!

  • Toby Muresianu

    Glad you saved me those two hours!

  • MikeDGM

    Done all of this and still got the problem when overriding  WebView.
    Other suggestions??

  • MikeDGM

    Never mind.  I fixed it by deleting the entire Class and recreating it.

  • Donn Felker

    Are you set to Java 6?

    Sent from Android

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    Thank you very much!

  • Marcus

    Thanks this is a big help.

    However I have 1.7 installed and I am getting these errors. Do I need to install 1.6 to get rid of them ?


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  • Steve

    Thank you! 

  • Johnh10000

    Well that was easy!  What else is it going to throw at me today ;)  Cheers!  

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  • Jonathan

    Thanks for the help, 1 hour wasted. This helped save the other 1 hour

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    You saved my day !

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    thanks for saving me from countless fidgety hours.

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